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First Impressions: Microsoft SQL Server 2008

Mar 25

Written by:
Wednesday, March 25, 2009 11:17 PM  RssIcon

I bit the bullet today and installed MS SQL Server 2008 today, read on for some interesting things I found out.

Today I installed Microsoft SQL Server 2008 on three machines.  One at work, one at home on my dev box, and another on my database/web server.  The ironic thing is, the install was the smoothest on the most complicated install, my db server when I asked it to upgrade my pre-existing SQL Server 2005 install (with live databases, like this blog :>).

Full Versions vs Express Versions

This is an interesting discussion.  In the past MS......oh heck, I'll skip the "Cliff Clavin" shpeel and give you only the meat tonight, it's too late for my usual long stories.

Short: Express, don't (if you can help it!)!  Enterprise/Standard/Workgroup/Web/Developer version, DO IT (if you can get the install). 

Long:

Express makes you install all the prerequisites manually while the other versions do it for you.  The one hiccup I ran into was on my development box which didn't have VS 2008 SP1 installed.  I got through a few screens before getting a squak screen telling me to go install SP1 first.  Easiest way to tell if you have it installed?  Check your taskbar, if you see the regular VS icon with a number nine overlay, you're good to go.

VS08 SP1 indicator on the TaskBar

Once you start the install, you'll notice Microsoft has yet again changed their install workflow/organziation/UI/etc.  You'll see what I mean when you run the setup.exe, it's just another change to how they manage their installs and something new to get used to.  Another thing to get used to is what appears to endless pieces of information you end up just hitting Next on anyways!  The only time I didn't hit Next was cause of the VS08 SP1 misqueue and I just hit Finish (which was in the same place I believe).  Anyways, if you're lucky to have the non-Express versions, all the prerequisites will be installed for you (namely PowerShell). 

If you're like me, you might only want Management Studio on your dev box.  In that case you'll want to check only the Management Tools - Basic optionwhne you get to Feature Selection.  If you also want/require the Profiler, you'll want to keep the Management Tools - Complete checkbox checked too.

Installing Management Studio

Do you see all the rest of the steps after "Feature Selection?"  Every one of those has a "Next" button click required.  No big deal, just another thing to click.

Side note: I upgraded my MS SQL Server 2005 server in one shot without so much as a hiccup!  Awesome!  Have I stress tested it?  Have I put it through its paces?  No, it's 12:30am, too late and I'm tired. :>  But my website (via DNN) is running juuuuust fine, thank you.

THERE, now you're done and everything's installed right?  COOL!  So why the big hubbub about SQL Server 2008?  No, it's not for any of the Enterprise features, it's for the SQL Intellisense!!!!!!!!!  HOWEVER, one hiccup there!  If you're using SQL Server 2008 Management Studio to go against your SQL Server 2005 database, sorry, you won't be able to try out the intellisense feature. :<  Ya, I was quite bummed out too when I read that!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Dumb, Dumb, Dumb IMHO! :<

If you're lucky enough to be using SQL Server 2008 Management Studio against a SQL Server 2008 DB, you're golden and able to check out what VB, VB.NET and C# and C++ geeks.....uh. coders have been enjoying for YEARS!!!!!!!!

Chances are you'll find SSMS UI very simiar to Management Studio 2005, except for a yellow status/information bar along the bottom.  Another thing I noticed while using the Intellisense is I think I'll start aliasing my tables from now on cause otherwise the "@@xyz......" values that come up at the top of the list are a PITA to nav through to get to table/column names.

Tip: Just like in VS, the Intellisense window is enlargable!  Ya, if you stretch that window longer, that setting will stick.  Unfortunately the width setting won't.

So that's my first experiences playing with SQL Server 2008, it's late and I'm going to bed!  I would say Go grab a coffe and get coding, but I'll do that tomorrow morning! :>

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1 comment(s) so far...


Re: First Impressions: Microsoft SQL Server 2008

Mentioned in Jason Haley's Interesting Finds blog. :> Very cool! :>
http://jasonhaley.com/blog/archive/2009/03/26/143081.aspx

By phenry on   Thursday, March 26, 2009 12:09 PM

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