Microsoft Touts Perks of Yukon, Whidbey and Laguna

Company plugs integration features added to SQL Server 2005, its mobile subset and Visual Studio 2005, all set for release in the first half of 2005.

SAN FRANCISCO—Microsoft Corp. plans to add new Reporting Services capabilities to the next version of its SQL Server database, known as SQL Server 2005, according to company officials at VSLive, the Visual Studio developers conference here.

SQL Server 2005, code-named Yukon, had been due to ship later this year. Earlier this month, Microsoft pushed back the delivery date to the first half of 2005.

Bill Baker, Microsoft SQL Server Business Intelligence general manager, told conference attendees in a keynote address Friday morning that Microsoft will add new features to Reporting Services as part of the SQL Server 2005 release. In January, Microsoft began shipping an early version of Reporting Services that works with SQL Server 2000 rather than holding off until Yukon ships.

The updated version of Reporting Services includes embeddable Visual Studio controls that will allow distribution of report-processing capabilities in packaged as well as custom-built application software. By using these controls, customers and independent-software vendors wont need a separate report server, according to Microsoft.

The new controls will ship with SQL Server 2005 as well as with Visual Studio 2005, the Visual Studio tool suite known as Whidbey also due in the first half of next year.

Baker also highlighted the Unified Dimensional Model (UDM)—an element of the analysis services that will be part of SQL Server 2005. UDM will combine traditional online-analytical-processing (OLAP) analysis and relational reporting technologies to form a single programming model. Microsoft has said UDM will help bring business intelligence to the masses.

At the VSLive sister show, the Microsoft Mobile Developers Conference, Microsoft demonstrated the forthcoming version of SQL Server for Windows CE—officially rechristened SQL Server 2005 Mobile.

Microsoft released the first alpha version of the SQL Server 2005 bits to developers attending the Mobile DevCon. The bits shipped as part of the Visual Studio 2005 "technical community preview" alpha release that Microsoft handed out at the conference. The final version of SQL Server 2005 Mobile, code-named Laguna, is slated to ship by mid-2005, along with Whidbey and Yukon.

Laguna is a subset of SQL Server that is optimized for mobile devices. The compact database is designed to run on Microsofts PocketPC, Smartphone and Tablet PC systems.

Kevin Collins, senior program manager for SQL Server Mobile, called the 2005 Laguna release the biggest and most feature-rich release since Microsoft initially launched the 1.0 version of the product.

Features slated to debut in the 2005 Mobile release include tight integration with Visual Studio; multiuser support; new user-interface tools for synchronization; data transformation services (DTS) integration, allowing developers to pipe Oracle, DB2 and other rivals database data directly into 2005 Mobile; and new management and query tools.

Microsoft isnt releasing pricing for the 2005 Laguna release yet, Collins said. But the company plans to license it via the same terms of the current SQL Server for Windows CE 2.0 product. The 2005 Mobile release will be freely redistributable. But Microsoft will charge either a per-CPU or client access license (CAL) fee for customers who want to connect 2005 Mobile back to SQL Server.

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