Scanning the Microsoft sites it might not be obvious that April 09 was a huge month for new releases from the SQL Team. Given that it is sometimes difficult to find everything in one place I thought I’d make it easier for you by creating this index.

Beyond the links there is nothing in this post particularly insightful.

As mentioned in my prior news post SQL Server 2008 Service Pack 1 was released. In addition, lots of related stuff was updated.

Latest updates to the Interoperability & Extensions to SQL Server

 

7 April 09 Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Data Mining Add-ins for Microsoft Office 2007, April 2009

This is brilliant technology that makes Data Mining accessible to people who haven’t got a clue about Data Mining. Just need Office Excel 2007 & a copy of SQL 2008 Analysis Server, with the Data Mining Sessions parameter turned on & all your business users can mine the data they pulled into their Excel Spreadsheet. This delivers two add-ins for Microsoft Office Excel 2007 (Table Analysis Tools and Data Mining Client) and one add-in for Microsoft Office Visio 2007 (Data Mining Templates).

There is also a version that works for SQL 2005 & Office 2007. While not quite as full featured it is still very nifty. It is contained in the Feature Pack for SQL Server 2005 - February 2007 There is also a version for Office 2003 & SQL 2005, but I can’t find a link to it any more, so I assume we’ve pulled it.

7 April 09 Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Reporting Services Report Builder 2.0, April 2009

An intuitive report authoring environment for business and power users to create SQL Reporting Services Reports. This update now supports Click-Once Install.

7 April 09 Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Reporting Services Add-in for Microsoft SharePoint Technologies, April 2009

Display your reports natively inside SharePoint. Sure you can put SQL Reports into SharePoint without this add-in. But it provides much nicer integration, especially letting you control security using the SharePoint’s security on the page.

7 April 09 Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Upgrade Advisor, April 2009

When you install SQL 2008 on a machine which has previous editions of SQL installed, the SQL 08 setup program includes the Upgrade Advisor & will run this Upgrade check & warn you of any potential issues with your schema. Well…, it runs this if you are attempting to upgrade the existing instance. If you are just creating an additional SQL 2008 instance next to you previous versions there is nothing to check.

It is a good idea to download this first & scan your databases prior to attempting to setup over the top. At the same time you could use profiler to capture a representative sample of your applications queries & scan them too. This will give you a much more thorough check of your system & reduce the potential issues you may have upgrading your production systems.

Note: If you move your SQL 2000/2005 database to SQL 2008 & run it in compatibility mode. The Upgrade Advisor will not be able to scan it & you lose the ability to get any insight this tool may have provided you.

 

7 April 09 Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Feature Pack, April 2009

The Feature pack includes a large variety of other interoperability & other add-ins. Especially popular is the Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Driver for PHP This driver also works for SQL 2008. But note: Unlike the JDBC driver which has UNIX version, the PHP Driver only runs on Windows platforms.
Tip:  The feature pack points to the older JDBC Driver v1.2, use the JDBC v2.0 below.

Feature Pack for SQL Server 2005 - February 2007  perhaps you may find it handy, this is the equivalent for your SQL 2005 servers

 

3 April 09 Microsoft SQL Server JDBC Driver 2.0

a Type 4 JDBC driver that provides database connectivity through the standard JDBC application program interfaces (APIs) available in Java Platform, Enterprise Edition 5.

30 Jan 09 Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Books Online - Jan 2009

Always handy to be using the latest release of the docs, They constantly are adding more examples & better explanations.

I trust this saves you some time,

Dave