Microsoft scored brownie points with enterprise players by declaring in October that it wouldnt charge extra for dual-core chips, although analysts at the time pointed out that it didnt cost Microsoft much, since it didnt have many large enterprise customers who would use such technology. Rizzo said that customers also told Microsoft that they didnt want to pay for passive failover servers. Thus, with SQL Server 2005, Microsoft wont require an additional license for a secondary server, as long as its just used for passive failover. Microsoft is also offering discounted versions for ISVs for redistribution. Any edition can be shipped with volume discounts for partners.Chris Alliegro, an analyst for Directions on Microsoft, in Redmond, Wash., said that Microsoft cant be beat when it comes to cost per transaction. "I think Microsoft is really stressing the point that SQL Server, from a cost-per-transaction standpoint, from any cost/competitive standpoint, looks very, very attractive compared to IBM or Oracle products. Its hard to identify feature areas where Microsoft is not at least on parity with those players. I think theyve got a great story from a cost-competition standpoint." Alliegro was also impressed with changes to the Workload Governor in MSDE. As it was, the Governor was limited to five concurrent workloads in the engine. When any queries over five came in, the server would be throttled. It was confusing for customers, who thought it was throttled to five users or five connections, as opposed to five concurrent workloads. Rizzo claimed mea culpa, saying that Microsoft "didnt do a good job of figuring that one out." The confusion will be eased in the Express Edition, which will just be limited to 1GB RAM and to a 4GB database size. "Removing the throttling restriction, that kind of mysteriously degraded database performance after a certain amount of connections, so thats a good thing," Alliegro said. "Theyve also increased size: Its now 4GB, so it gives you more headroom before you have to think about moving up." Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest database news, reviews and analysis.
Related to the news, Dell and Microsoft are announcing a new benchmark that tagged the Dell/SQL Server combination as the top database/platform for price/performance, breaking the previous $1.50 per-transaction barrier by delivering 28,000 transactions per minute at $1.40 per transaction.