Microsoft will make SQL Server available for Linux

In a surprising move, Microsoft announced today that it's making its SQL Server database system available to customers running Linux. The sprawling relational database system was previously a Windows exclusive, but Microsoft says it wants "to deliver a consistent data platform across Windows Server and Linux, as well as on-premises and cloud" in the spirit of "meeting [customers] where they are."

Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Ubuntu developer Canonical are already working with Microsoft to bring SQL Server to their platforms. Redmond says it's opening a private preview of "core relational database capabilities" of SQL Server on Linux today for customers running Ubuntu, according to ZDNet's Mary Jo Foley. Microsoft says it's targeting mid-2017 for general availability of SQL Server on Linux.

Foley further notes that SQL Server 2016 is nearing release candidate status. A general release will follow later this year. Microsoft is also hosting an event called "Data Driven" on March 10 where CEO Satya Nadella, executive vice president Scott Guthrie, corporate vice president Joseph Sirosh, and Microsoft North America president Judson Althoff are all slated to present more information about the upcoming SQL Server update.

Comments closed
    • Unknown-Error
    • 3 years ago

    Took you this long?

    **FROWN**

    • atari030
    • 3 years ago

    This all sounds very familiar for some reason. Hmmmm….SQL Server on *nix. They should just call it by its original name….[b<]SYBASE[/b<].

      • aduljr
      • 3 years ago

      No, because Sybase is still around as a SAP company. It may have started that way but it is no where near that in today’s version. Interesting history though.
      [url<]https://blogs.msdn.microsoft.com/euanga/2006/01/19/sql-mythbusters-sql-server-is-really-a-sybase-product-not-a-microsoft-one/[/url<]

        • atari030
        • 3 years ago

        It was just a tongue-in-cheek comment from me as having been a Sybase DBA in a past life I knew at the start they were the same product. Just trying to point out that SQL Server on *nix is not a new thing……though the codebase of SQL Server now being ported to Linux is a obviously a completely different animal.

        But I’m guessing it still has sp_help, a master database, and a ton of other things that are still very much the same 🙂

    • torquer
    • 3 years ago

    Won’t be enough to convince the haters that Microsoft is a different company today than they were in 1995, 2000, or even 2013.

    Microsoft doesn’t do everything right, not by a long shot. That being said, they are finally listening to their customers and the world. They are becoming a very pro-customer company, much more so than many of the other large tech companies. That kind of thing should be applauded by all of us, not derided.

      • bthylafh
      • 3 years ago

      I’ll start believing it when they rationalize OOXML to get rid of all the legacy “format this as Word 5 did” junk and in general embrace open file formats.

        • Anonymous Coward
        • 3 years ago

        That would be a different business calculation, wouldn’t it be?

        • w76
        • 3 years ago

        FLOSS guys have to stop fighting that battle; not only has that battle ended so has the war. Things have moved on past old-school office suites and started to move in to the cloud, like Google Docs. That’s where the battle is now, Office365 vs Google Docs. Diminishing numbers of people are going to care if LibreOffice will correctly display a .docx file. Diminishing numbers of people will even deal with office files directly on their machines in the first place.

      • Deanjo
      • 3 years ago

      I wouldn’t call stripping away of features, forced adware, reducing user control and introducing tons of data collection “pro-customer”, it is quite the opposite.

        • w76
        • 3 years ago

        Outside of Windows, they’ve done a couple OK things, like bring official support and apps to Android. But that’s like awarding a worker for showing up in the morning. That’s kind of a baseline expectation, not extraordinary.

        • DrCR
        • 3 years ago

        Indeed, they are a long way away from being anything approaching very pro-customer company.

      • Srsly_Bro
      • 3 years ago

      You must have missed the windows store game news.

    • ronch
    • 3 years ago

    I’m sure there are some pretty solid Linux distros out there but they’re usually backed by companies like Red Hat that employs lots of experts working all week under one central command and getting a steady salary so they can all focus on polishing the code and making sure it ‘just works’, and thus these distros are not really free. For the rest of us, however, the main allure of Linux is it’s free. Problem is, these free Linux distributions are maintained by a non-cohesive group across the globe, working in their free time, lacking the necessary hardware testing labs to ensure the OS runs without hiccups across a huge range of possible hardware configurations, and whose technical abilities probably went through practically no stringent screening process. Result: the OS either works or it doesn’t.

    Don’t stone me. I’m just speaking from my own personal experience and don’t mean to go against many die hard Linux fans around here. I’ve been a Linux fan around the 2009-2011 timeframe and I really hoped I could stick with it, but after growing tired of distros like Ubuntu which is the most popular and perhaps one of the most consumer-centric distribution out there, I just ditched it. Free is nice but you do get what you pay for.

    I still check out Linux from time to time hoping things have become much better but my most recent experience with Ubuntu 15.04 (or was it 15.10?) last year didn’t convince me that it’s robust enough. And given how I’d be ditching my Windows games collection (mostly old favorites) if I switch to Linux, it should at least be convincingly robust to make it feel worthwhile, right? But if it entails being unable to run your Windows apps and bugs galore, never mind.

      • shank15217
      • 3 years ago

      um, just use centos

      • Anonymous Coward
      • 3 years ago

      Linux as a desktop… meh.

      I haven’t paid for Linux in 15 years, but its paid for me, you could say. I use Centos mostly, but also now Amazon has noticed they can make money from Linux, so at work I’m using Amazon Linux plus whatever they use under the hood in their software services. The place I’m working is a 99% Windows shop, except we must spend most of our IT budget on Linux-backed stuff in AWS (including storage services, I assume those are based on hardware running Linux but of course Amazon doesnt’ discuss that).

      • faramir
      • 3 years ago

      “Free is nice but you do get what you pay for.”

      Actually you get more (something ranging from a useless quirk up to a complete solution that covers everything you need) than you pay for ($0.00).

        • ronch
        • 3 years ago

        Yep, it ranges from ‘useless quirk’ to ‘complete solution that covers everything you need’. In my case, however, testing Ubuntu last year, I fell in the ‘useless quirk’ end of the spectrum. Guess that’s what I get for paying $0.00. Fair enough.

      • DrCR
      • 3 years ago

      Ubuntu? No wonder you dropped it.

      As a geek, rather than a user, getting into Linux usually entails Arch, Slackware, Gentoo, et al.

        • shank15217
        • 3 years ago

        This isn’t 1993, Linux is a serious operating system used for serious work.

          • DrCR
          • 3 years ago

          Um, yes, that was my point. ronch seemed to approach Linux as a user of Ubuntu (non-server edition, it appears), rather than a geek. And that’s of course most certainly fine, I’m just not surprised he decided to at least in part to step away from it.

          Edit: grammer fix

    • Vulk
    • 3 years ago

    Sweet, I was assuming they were going to do this. In a lot of ways they needed it to support Docker in Azure anyway.

    • Srsly_Bro
    • 3 years ago

    Microsoft’s plan to kill Linux next

      • CuttinHobo
      • 3 years ago

      Just like gaming…

      “We’re totally committed to Linux!”

        • faramir
        • 3 years ago

        My thoughts as well – how long before this gets cancelled?

        (not as though we would lose much when it is …)

    • idgarad
    • 3 years ago

    Next up Windows 10 for Linux to try and de-throne X Window.

    • Tristan
    • 3 years ago

    They prepare DirectX, Office, IIS and other to linux.
    They finally drop Windows

      • Vulk
      • 3 years ago

      I wouldn’t be shocked, honestly if that’s where they are in another 10 years.

      If they can’t charge for the OS, and trust me, it’s hard for them to charge even businesses right now, then having their own OS becomes a liability at a certain point, and they won’t be able to afford the 1k plus developers working on it with no ROI.

        • Airmantharp
        • 3 years ago

        They may actually roll their own Linus distros in place of Windows. But we’re speculating *way* into the future.

        But, DirectX for OSX, maybe? Lol!

          • alrey
          • 3 years ago

          I’m will to pay for my OS as long as its good and an improvement over the previous version. Maybe they know that very few will buy win 10 thats why its a free upgrade.

    • rudimentary_lathe
    • 3 years ago

    But will it be web scale?

    • Theolendras
    • 3 years ago

    With the SQL licensing pricing since the release of SQL 2012, it’s making such interesting marging, might as well run them wherever you want.

    • davidbowser
    • 3 years ago

    Sweet merciful crap!

    Ballmer just rolled over in his platinum lined sarcophagus.

      • MarkG509
      • 3 years ago

      Not sure it counts if he’s not dead. Maybe his platinum toilet just clogged.

        • just brew it!
        • 3 years ago

        Do you know for a fact that he *doesn’t* sleep in a platinum lined sarcophagus?

          • flip-mode
          • 3 years ago

          He does not. It has been independently verified that he sleeps in a sarcophagus made entirely of – not lined with – Californium 252.

          • bthylafh
          • 3 years ago

          It’s silver, so he can be locked in harmlessly when the moon is full.

    • Flatland_Spider
    • 3 years ago

    Does it require X and Wine to run?

      • Deanjo
      • 3 years ago

      I doubt if it will require those but I wouldn’t be surprised if Mono was needed.

        • Flatland_Spider
        • 3 years ago

        I think a Mono dependency goes without saying.

          • Vulk
          • 3 years ago

          I’m not an expert on this, but I do code in VS for a living. Strictly speaking, the Mono project is NOT required. More to the point, Mono is ‘baked in’ now that .NET is Open Source, so Linux is really just a build target with the latest Roslyn compilers now.

          It makes sense if you understand that MS is also motivated to do all this on Linux since that is part of their Azure Cloud.

    • BobbinThreadbare
    • 3 years ago

    Does MSSQL do anything interesting that MYSQL and Postgres don’t do?

      • Flatland_Spider
      • 3 years ago

      It runs T-SQL, and it integrates with AD really easily.

      MySQL has limited LDAP integration, so the permissions and groups of MSSQL is a step up. Specifically, LDAP users get mapped to a local MySQL user and groups aren’t directly supported.

      I can’t really think of anything that would give MSSQL a step on Postgres.

        • dragontamer5788
        • 3 years ago

        I’d bet that SQL Server’s primary benefit is the [url=https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Language_Integrated_Query<]C# / LINQ integration[/url<]. Postgres is the best IMO database available from the open-source world however. So I'd like to know what more knowledgeable people think about the comparison.

          • jeffcutsinger
          • 3 years ago

          .NET dev here. LINQ is not tied to MSSQL. You can use it with MySQL/Postgres.

          I leverage LINQ a _lot_. The least useful thing about it, in fact the one area where I think it fails, is its ostensible selling point — DB integration. It’s a lot handier for writing loops more declaratively.

      • Vulk
      • 3 years ago

      Yes. It does T-SQL. It supports a lot of VERY nice table functions that MYSQL doesn’t (although Postgres is arguably better at this).

      • UnfriendlyFire
      • 3 years ago

      More competition.

      Ex: Mantle API, and suddenly MS started talking about DX12 publicly a lot more.

      • Freon
      • 3 years ago

      MySQL has a lot of key missing features like CTEs. It looks like a mess to me.

        • Anonymous Coward
        • 3 years ago

        MySQL makes me a productive employee. We also use Postgres and SQL Server, with the long term objective being to use Postgres for everything particularly serious, and MySQL for certain things. SQL Server is on the way out where I work.

      • Anonymous Coward
      • 3 years ago

      Microsoft was perhaps driven to make this change because they are at risk of loosing market share precisely because there isn’t much to distinguish SQL Server except what it [i<]can't[/i<] do. It [i<]couldn't[/i<] run on Linux, everyone else can. Linux is huge in the server world. Recently I've been using a Linux-compatible TFS client implemented in Java. Official MS software. This allows the place I work to use Linux servers for some tasks. Is it bad for MS that they loose those potential service license sales, or good for them that we continue to tolerate TFS, and pay for that license? In the end, they need to be competitive.

        • crabjokeman
        • 3 years ago

        If they’re loosing their market share, they should tighten it.

    • DrDominodog51
    • 3 years ago

    [quote<]If you can't beat them, join them.[/quote<]

    • chuckula
    • 3 years ago

    At first I was going to go all late-90s X-files “embrace extend extinguish” about this announcement.

    Then I remembered that most Oracle installations are on Linux, and I got perspective about who’s really the evil one.

    In conclusion: Good job Microsoft. If you get a real port of Office over to Linux I’ll freakin’ buy it. Better than having to run it over Wine or in a VM.

      • Deanjo
      • 3 years ago

      [quote<]Then I remembered that most Oracle installations are on Linux, and I got perspective about who's really the evil one.[/quote<] Thus why most have moved to MariaDB.

        • Flatland_Spider
        • 3 years ago

        Have people moved to MariaDB? I know MySQL is expensive now, and Percona seems to be the big hub of MySQL activity.

          • Deanjo
          • 3 years ago

          Seen a ton of it over the last few rears. It also doesn’t hurt that distros dropped Mysql like a hot potato once MariaDB was out.

          • Vulk
          • 3 years ago

          If you were Oracle before. No, you haven’t moved to Maria. If you were using MySql, or your code was written in the last year or two… then maybe.

      • Flatland_Spider
      • 3 years ago

      [quote<]Then I remembered that most Oracle installations are on Linux, and I got perspective about who's really the evil one.[/quote<] Oracle Database is just horrible to deal with. It at least makes a little more sense on Linux then it does on Windows.

      • Chun¢
      • 3 years ago

      I’m still waiting for some love from adobe. I can never understand GIMP as well as I can Photoshop

      • Anonymous Coward
      • 3 years ago

      Office is going online and subscription based, haven’t you heard? 🙂

      • Concupiscence
      • 3 years ago

      Seriously, how many installs of SQL Server live in VMs right now? And how many more copies of SQL Server could be sold if you removed the requirement of a server grade Windows license? This is just going where a large proportion of their customers are, and it’s commendable.

    • blitzy
    • 3 years ago

    Makes sense so that they can move forward with ASP.NET Core being platform agnostic and modular

      • Vulk
      • 3 years ago

      yep.

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