What's New in SQL Server vNext

SQL Server vNext represents a major step towards making SQL Server a platform that gives you choices of development languages, data types, on-premises and in the cloud, and across operating systems by bringing the power of SQL Server to Linux, Linux-based Docker containers, and Windows.

This topic is a summary of what is new in the most recent Community Technical Preview (CTP) release, links to more detailed what's new information for specific feature areas.

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What's New in SQL Server vNext CTP 2.0 (April 2017)

SQL Server Database Engine

  • Resumable online index rebuild. Resumable online index rebuild allows you to resume an online index rebuild operation from where it stopped after a failure (such as a failover to a replica or insufficient disk space). You can also pause and later resume an online index rebuild operation. For example, you might need to temporarily free up systems resources in order to execute a high priority task or complete the index rebuild in another miniatous window if the available maintenance windows is too short for a large table. Finally, resumable online index rebuild does not require significant log space, which allows you to perform log truncation while the resumable rebuild operation is running. See ALTER INDEX and Guidelines for online index operations.
  • IDENTITY_CACHE option for ALTER DATABASE SCOPED CONFIGURATION. A new option IDENTITY_CACHE was added to ALTER DATABASE SCOPED CONFIGURATION T-SQL statement. When this option is set to OFF it allows to avoid gaps in the values of identity columns in case a server restarts unexpectedly or fails over to a secondary server. See ALTER DATABASE SCOPED CONFIGURATION.
  • CLR uses Code Access Security (CAS) in the .NET Framework, which is no longer supported as a security boundary. A CLR assembly created with PERMISSION_SET = SAFE may be able to access external system resources, call unmanaged code, and acquire sysadmin privileges. Beginning with SQL Server 2017, an sp_configure option called clr strict security is introduced to enhance the security of CLR assemblies. clr strict security is enabled by default, and treats SAFE and EXTERNAL_ACCESS assemblies as if they were marked UNSAFE. The clr strict security option can be disabled for backward compatibility, but this is not recommended. Microsoft recommends that all assemblies be signed by a certificate or asymmetric key with a corresponding login that has been granted UNSAFE ASSEMBLY permission in the master database. For more information, see CLR strict security.
  • Graph database capabilities to model many-to-many relationships. This includes new CREATE TABLE syntax for creating node and edge tables, and the keyword MATCH for queries. For more information, see Graph Processing with SQL Server 2017.
  • Automatic tuning is a database feature that provides insight into potential query performance problems, recommend solutions, and automatically fix identified problems. Automatic tuning in SQL Server, notifies you whenever a potential performance issue is detected, and lets you apply corrective actions, or lets the Database Engine automatically fix performance problems. For more information, see Automatic tuning.
  • Batch Mode Adaptive Join to improve plan quality (under db compatability 140).
  • Interleaved Execution for multi-statement T-SQL TVFs to improve plan quality (under db compatability 140).
  • Query Store now also tracks wait stats summary information.
  • DTC support for Always On Availability Groups for all cross database transactions among databases that are part of the availability group, including for databases that are part of same instance. For more information, see Transactions - Always On Availability Groups and Database Mirroring
  • This CTP contains bug fixes for the Database Engine.
  • For a detailed list of vNext CTP enhancements in previous CTP releases, see What's New in SQL Server vNext (Database Engine).

SQL Server Machine Learning Services

  • SQL Server R Services has a new name, to reflect support for the Python language in CTP 2.0. You can now use SQL Server Machine Learning Services (In-Database) to run either R or Python scripts in SQL Server. Or, install Microsoft Machine Learning Server (Standalone) to deploy and consume R and Python models that don’t require SQL Server.
  • Both platforms include new MicrosoftML algorithms for distributed machine learning, and the latest version of Microsoft R (version 9.1.0).
  • For more information, see What’s new for Machine Learning.

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What's New in SQL Server vNext CTP 1.4 (March 2017)

SQL Server Database Engine

SQL Server R Services

  • There are no new R Services features in this CTP.
  • For more detailed R Services what's new information, including details from previous CTPs, see What's New in SQL Server R Services.

SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS)

  • There are no new SSRS features in this CTP.
  • For more detailed SSRS what's new information, including details from previous releases, see What's new in Reporting Services.

SQL Server Analysis Services (SSAS)

  • There are no new SSAS features in this CTP.
  • For more details, including what's new for Analysis Services in the latest preview releases of SSDT and SSMS, see What's New in Analysis Services vNext.

SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS)

Master Data Services (MDS)

  • There are no new Master Data Services features in this CTP.

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What's New in SQL Server vNext CTP 1.3 (February 2017)

SQL Server Database Engine

  • Indirect checkpoint performance improvements.
  • Cluster-less Availability Groups support added.
  • Minimum Replica Commit Availability Groups setting added.
  • Availability Groups can now work across Windows-Linux to enable cross-OS migrations and testing.
  • Temporal Tables Retention Policy support added,
  • New DMV SYS.DM_DB_STATS_HISTOGRAM
  • Online non-clustered columnstore index build and rebuild support added
  • 5 new dynamic management views to return information about Linux process. For more information, see Linux Process Dynamic Management Views.
  • sys.dm_db_stats_histogram (Transact-SQL) is added for examining statistics.

SQL Server Analysis Services (SSAS) (CTP 1.3)

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See also