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SQL Server 2016 Features and the Power of the Hybrid Cloud

17 Jan 2017 by Joanna Furlong

Hybrid cloud adoption is not slowing down. On the contrary, hybrid cloud has gone mainstream. In 2014 the hybrid cloud market was $25.28 billion worldwide, reaching $33.3 billion in 2016. The rise in hybrid cloud computing is estimated to boost the cloud market to $91.74 by 2021 — and it will only continue to grow from there.

Size of the hybrid (public/private) cloud market worldwide, from 2014 to 2021 (in billion U.S. dollars)
Size of the hybrid (public/private) cloud market worldwide, from 2014 to 2021 (in billion U.S. dollars). 2014 was $25.28 billion, 2015 was $32.18 billion, 2016 was projected to be $33.28 billion, 2017 is projected to be $40.8 billion, 2018 is projected to be $49.9 billion, 2019 is projected to be $61.2 billion, 2020 is projected to be $74.9 billion, 2021 is projected to be $91.74 billion.

This year, Gartner also reported that “cloud-first, and even cloud-only, is replacing the defensive no-cloud stance that dominated many large providers in recent years. Today, most provider technology innovation is cloud-centric, with the stated intent of retrofitting the technology to on premises.” And Gartner’s prediction is leading the pack for preferred cloud environments: a hybrid approach.

While the cloud is continuing to gain ground, another trend persists as well: the investment and adoption of technologies designed to support enterprise data management. How can businesses maximize their investment in both interests? And how can technology serve to innovate an organization’s data warehouse while reaping all of the benefits of cloud computing?

Microsoft SQL Server 2016 may be the answer. Read on to learn about SQL Server 2016 features and benefits as they relate to hybrid cloud.

Push your data to the hybrid cloud.

Choosing between archiving your data, increasing database performance and streamlining operational costs has always been a complicated tug of war. But, with SQL Server 2016, you don’t have to choose.

The Stretch Database built-in technology in SQL Server 2016 allows organizations to quickly “stretch” their databases to the cloud and maintain fast access to all of them. Stretching data to the cloud has the potential to save enormous amounts of money. It also provides a brilliant solution for IT professionals who struggle with irregular processing demands. Do you have modest workloads for most of the week but know you have a gigantic one scheduled for the weekend? No problem. In a few clicks, you can gracefully scale out and get it done.

Cut out the management headaches.

Clunky administrative tools do favors for no one. That’s why SQL Server 2016 beefed up its built-in administrative tool set. This includes backups to Microsoft Azure and migration of on-premise SQL Server solutions to Azure. In addition, Microsoft has expanded its slew of options for IT administrators, including an array of backup choices and the ability to tack on an Azure node to an Always On Availability Group.

Service Pack 1 gives you even greater access.

Just last month, Microsoft did something extraordinary. It released Service Pack 1 (SP1) for SQL Server 2016. The release of SP1 gives SQL Server users access to nearly all of the rich Enterprise Edition features, in a low-cost (or free) format. Important security features such as Row Level Security and dynamic data masking are included, as is Always Encrypted, fine grain auditing and more.

If you’ve been making software investments solely based on features, this is a major upgrade. The Enterprise Edition will still be available for licensing, with several distinctions in what an Enterprise Edition provides over standard versions. Now that so many organizations have been given the keys to the bulk of the programmability features, thanks to SP1, things are about to get a lot more interesting in the hybrid cloud world.

Enterprise data management, with consistency

SQL Server 2016 was engineered specifically for a hybrid cloud environment. It offers a smooth experience regardless of how you access the data, or where the data resides. From on premises to the cloud, users are on the same application. This is a testament to extensive user testing, and a thoughtful, integrative approach to both hardware and software components.

And when it comes to data — your organization’s most valued asset — consistency is a must.

Built-in and ready to roll

It’s time to focus on where you’re going with your data management strategy and how hybrid cloud supports your vision. There’s no need to worry about options, upgrades or add-ons; just focus on where you’re headed. Microsoft SQL Server 2016 arrives with everything built in. Access all of the tools you need to succeed with your hybrid cloud — security, performance and business intelligence — right from the start.

Making the move to SQL Server 2016?

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