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.NET tools to be bundled in next SQL Server

After two decades with the same underlying technology, SQL Server is in need of a facelift, Microsoft says. At the Professional Developers Conference, Microsoft vice president Gordon Mangione revealed some early features of Yukon, the next version of the database management system.

LOS ANGELES -- Microsoft revealed a few more details about its upcoming SQL Server database, code-named Yukon, on Tuesday at the company's Professional Developers Conference.

Yukon, which is considered to be a major overhaul of SQL Server, has been in beta with more than 2,000 testers for about six months, said Gordon Mangione, a Microsoft vice president who works on the SQL Server team.

"We will be managing millions of items on our desktop," he said. "The technology that served us well over the past 20 years won't take us into the future."

One Yukon highlight is the fact that many of the tools that .NET developers use will be bundled into the database. The key new feature, which Microsoft has already made public, is the reporting services function, which lets database administrators create reports from whichever source they wish. Reporting services are already a part of SQL Server 2000.

"We're pretty excited about the new SQL Server because of all the time and effort saved," said Ignus Bezuidenhout, a system architect at First Citizens Bank, Raleigh, N.C. "A lot of the issues with interoperability appear to be gone."

But for Bezuidenhout, the built-in reporting services come a little late, because his company has already adopted a new reporting engine from Ottawa-based Cognos Inc.

Mangione also outlined some of the key features in the upcoming WinFS file system in Longhorn, the next-generation Windows operating system. The new file system is built on top of NT FS, to which Mangione said, "there was no way we were going to throw that out and start all over again."

But, he said, Microsoft started at the deepest part of the engine and is building it out from there.


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