By Lisa Vaas  |  Posted 2003-09-26 Print this article Print

Rizzo: Today in SQL Server 2000 we support Web Services. We have a tool kit customers can download. It does require you to have IIS [Internet Information Services Web Server] running in your environment. With Yukon we remove that requirement. SQL Server can expose Web Services without having to have IIS running in your environment. The benefit is now the relational database can expose anything—for example, a stored procedure or data itself—as a Web Service, without requiring that infrastructure. Youve got this component between you and the database now. Theres a little performance hit, with two pieces instead of one. Now we get even better performance.
eWEEK: Will performance improve in Yukon?
Rizzo: Our goal is that Yukon will at least meet the same performance as SQL Server 2000, but were hoping it exceeds it. Thats in all aspects, not only in terms of what SQL Server 2000 has, but some new capabilities. For example, writing code in .Net should be the same as writing code in the T-SQL environment. eWEEK: Which gets us to the question of integrating the database with the .Net framework. Whats the motivation behind that? Rizzo: .Net code today doesnt run within SQL Server. It runs separate, outside the database. In Yukon weve put it into the database. Our plan is that T-SQL and .Net technologies will run at the same speed. The reason were putting .Net inside the database is now customers can write SQL Server business logic inside the database using any .Net language. For example, you can use C# or Visual Basic. Were also talking with Fujitsu, who builds Cobol .Net. Customers like the productivity of .Net, in terms of time to market. It allows them to build code faster. They dont have to build their own functions, because .Net has a framework that takes advantage of base things you have to do in programming. Customers want to take the skills, languages, Web sites and certifications they have in the .Net world and allow them to come into internal database business logic. Heres the scenario: A business has all its DBAs trained in Visual Basic. They go to SQL Server and have to use this thing called T-SQL. Its not hard, but theyre not 100 percent trained on it. A lot say, Hey, I want Visual Basic everywhere. So were providing customers the ability to have flexibility. Were also working closely with Borland, not only with C# but with J Builder, a Java-based product to support SQL Server 2000 and Yukon. Wed love for the entire world to be .Net-based. But customers make decisions based on their business needs, and some choose Java. We want to make sure we support whatever customers decide to program with. eWEEK: What are some other highlights of Yukon? Rizzo: In Yukon, well enhance Reporting Services. Well also ship a very much improved business intelligence platform. Weve seen great adoption of business intelligence technologies inside SQL Server as well as Microsoft Office. With Yukon were turning up the crank another notch, adding things like more advanced data mining technologies. One thing we heard from customers, they said Hey, business intelligence is great, it helps me figure out what happened in my business in the past. But computers should help me predict what will happen based on data they have stored and algorithms. Thats why were investing in business intelligence. There are two data-mining algorithms in SQL Server today. Six more will be added to Yukon. Integrated data mining, integrated reporting, business reporting overall, is really what makes data youre storing come alive. eWEEK: What about security in Yukon? Rizzo: Were doing a ton of work in security. We did a ton of work inside SQL Server 2000. We did a ton of work in Service Pack 3. Yukons one of many things in the road to secure computing for Microsoft. One thing youll see us do over the next couple months for SQL Server 2000, well come out with Microsoft Update. It will allow you to patch SQL Server in the automated way you now do with Windows. Well also add new security features like secure by design and secure by default. We wont have services turned on by default; youll have to opt on. Well have secure default settings, so passwords have to be strong, with characters, numbers and symbols. You cant put password as your password. eWEEK: What about improving manageability, scalability and availability? Rizzo: Those are our bread and butter. When it comes to databases, you can have great programming environment, great business intelligence features, but if the servers down, or if its not secure, well, youre done. Discuss This in the eWEEK Forum

Lisa Vaas is News Editor/Operations for eWEEK.com and also serves as editor of the Database topic center. Since 1995, she has also been a Webcast news show anchorperson and a reporter covering the IT industry. She has focused on customer relationship management technology, IT salaries and careers, effects of the H1-B visa on the technology workforce, wireless technology, security, and, most recently, databases and the technologies that touch upon them. Her articles have appeared in eWEEK's print edition, on eWEEK.com, and in the startup IT magazine PC Connection. Prior to becoming a journalist, Vaas experienced an array of eye-opening careers, including driving a cab in Boston, photographing cranky babies in shopping malls, selling cameras, typography and computer training. She stopped a hair short of finishing an M.A. in English at the University of Massachusetts in Boston. She earned a B.S. in Communications from Emerson College. She runs two open-mic reading series in Boston and currently keeps bees in her home in Mashpee, Mass.

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