I wanted to show you some of the things the group has been working on. You might not see all these features in your latest CTP, but they are scheduled for the Final Release. I hope you like the list!
Title Component Advantage What's the big deal? Connection String Additions Connection Panel User Productivity Users can enter additional connection strings, which enables full use of Analysis Services. Previously, there was no way to connect with special behavior to AS. Data Collector Framework Increased management information Allows automatic, declarative collection of trace data, performance counters or transact-sql queries into a single database collection system. Installation Enhancements Installation Increased speed in install Re-worked UI to enable faster installations. Also, SSMS Express is now a combined codeset with SSMS (although with less features), allowing a consistent management experience. SSMS can now also be shipped "out of band", meaning that releases of CE can be combined with SSMS so that you don't have to wait on a service pack to connect to CE. Policy Based Management (formerly DMF) Management Framework Pro-active management Policy-based framework for managing, controlling and monitoring a SQL Server instance. Resource Governor Management Framework Greater control of system resources Enables you to specify limits on the amount of CPU and memory that incoming application requests can use. PowerShell integrated to work with SQL Server PowerShell Total and complete scripting control PowerShell, which will ship with SQL Server, is now aware of SQL Server 2008 objects. You have the full scripting constructs of PowerShell against SQL Server Objects. Navigate the SQL Server instance using "CD" commands. Create a Data Collector Set (for Data Collector) from a Profiler Trace Profiler Use the same tool to monitor as to control You can use a Profiler trace definition to create a data collector set, which allows you to find expensive queries and control them. Profiler Improvements Profiler Profiler launchable from SSMS. Profiler can be launched directly from a Query Editor Results window to the SPID of the query. Multi-Server Query Query Editor Run a query against multiple servers Run a single query across multiple server. Results have the server name pre-pended to them. Results show in a color-customizable result set. Intellisense Query Editor Auto-fill for keywords and objects, prevents mistakes, increases speed Shows proper syntax and object names automatically. Customizable tabs in Query Editor Query Editor Better navigation You can set the tab text at the top of the results pane. Launch Profiler from Query Editor Query Editor Quick access to activity information You can launch Profiler directly from a Query Editor Results window to the SPID of the query. Error List in Query Editor Query Editor Recall last errors in T-SQL Shows a list of the last errors generated by Query Editor New Right-Click options on Results Grid Query Results Window Easier Export of data Users can now select a range of rows in the Results Grid and copy the headings as well. Also, you can select individual cells and copy them with headers if you wish. Framework Improvements for SSMS SQL Server Management Studio Increased Performance Multiple internal code cleanups and fixes to improve the load time of the Object Explorer tree to over 20 times it's current performance. Also takes much less memory per object to load. Object Search SQL Server Management Studio Quickly locate and work on SQL Server objects Using PBM (DMF) under the covers, the user enters a full or partial string to match, which is searched within the current database to bring objects into Object Explorer Details. Speed Enhancements SSMS Increased performance Multiple fixes and framework changes to enable faster loading, and faster population. Connection consolidations where possible to take a lighter load on the server. Activity Monitor built for the DBA SSMS Quickly diagnose performance data with little overhead The new Activity Monitor was written from the ground up with the perspective of the DBA needing to chase down a performance problem in real time. Modeled after the new Windows Resource Monitor, DBAs can quickly see the active sessions, wait states, file I/O, and long running queries in a command console like UI. UI Framework Enhancements SSMS Better feedback and navigation A new "info bar" appears in many screens that guide the user with pre-validation (saving time and frustration) and visual navigation cues. New Object Explorer Details Pane SSMS Quick access to customizable information The header columns for each object can be selected. Selections are saved. Single-click on object instantly returns property information in a sizable panel at the bottom of SSMS like Vista. Security - Admin can reset password SSMS Easier to manage security The Security Admin can now reset a password for a user from SSMS. Security - More information on effective permissions SSMS Easier to determine permissions Enhanced the "effective permissions" display to show exactly what a principal has access to. Security - reduced clicks for permissions SSMS Faster implementation of security Reworked the screens to make it easier and faster to set permissions "Open Table" enhancements SSMS Takes a lighter load on the server A limited amount of rows is returned to the "Open Table" dialog to avoid taking locks and load on server. Database Diagram/Table Designer safety additions SSMS Prevents accidental operations The Table Designer and Database Designer tools have been reworked so that safety checks are taken for operations that would drop an object or cause data loss. Activity Monitor can launch Profiler SSMS Instant access to activity information Activity Monitor can launch SQL Server Profiler for the SPID it is centered on. Showplan - Extract Query from graphical plan SSMS Quickly show a query from a graphical display You can right-click a graphical showplan and extract the SQL query that generated it. Showplan - Extract XML from graphic SSMS Quickly access query breakdown You can right-click a showplan graphic and see the XML version of the plan. Showplan - XML is now formatted SSMS Improved visualization The XML created by the showplan is now formatted instead of showing as a large string. The sys.dm_exec_query_plan XML output can generate graphic SSMS You can go from the xml to the graphical plan in a single click The output from the sys.dm_exec_query_plan stored procedure includes an XML column of the query plan. Clicking it now generates a graphical display of the query. Performance Studio SSMS Complete performance tuning information with navigable reports Tracks historical performance metrics from SQL Server and the operating system, stores them in a repository, using drill-through reports. Configuration Servers SSMS Register servers at a central location Enables teams to register servers in a single location, once. Add GUI for Table Partitioning Setup SSMS Easier to set up table partitioning You can now set up Table Partitioning (which previously required a lot of typing) with SSMS. Includes a Manage Partition wizard to implement the “sliding window” scenario for managing partitioned tables, where for every unit of time (could be month/week/quarter), you bring in a new partition for the latest data and slide out the oldest partition for archival purposes. Service Broker UI enhancements SSMS Easier setup of Service Broker Hooked in the creation/alter templates with the context menu in the object-explorer. We have also added read-only property pages for each of these object types. Transact SQL Debugger integrated in SSMS It’s about time!
I was showing a visitor some of the new improvements we have in SQL Server 2008 and when I started SQL
PowerShell is all the rage! It is deeply integrated in SQL Server 2008, where you can start a PowerShell
I'm not going to shoot any questions to Microsoft about RTM release for SQL Server 2008, as it was made