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Microsoft SQL Server is a relational database management system developed by Microsoft. As a database server, it is a software product with the primary function of storing and retrieving data as requested by other software applications—which may run either on the same computer or on another computer across a network (including the Internet).
Microsoft markets at least a dozen different editions of Microsoft SQL Server, aimed at different audiences and for workloads ranging from small single-machine applications to large Internet-facing applications with many concurrent users.
- SQL Server 2008 R2 Datacenter is a full-featured edition of SQL Server and is designed for datacenters that need high levels of application support and scalability. It supports 256 logical processors and virtually unlimited memory and comes with StreamInsight Premium edition.The Datacenter edition has been retired in SQL Server 2012; all of its features are available in SQL Server 2012 Enterprise Edition
- SQL Server Enterprise Edition includes both the core database engine and add-on services, with a range of tools for creating and managing a SQL Server cluster. It can manage databases as large as 524 petabytes and address 2 terabytes of memory and supports 8 physical processors. SQL Server 2012 Enterprise Edition supports 160 physical processors.[
- SQL Server Standard edition includes the core database engine, along with the stand-alone services. It differs from Enterprise edition in that it supports fewer active instances (number of nodes in a cluster) and does not include some high-availability functions such as hot-add memory (allowing memory to be added while the server is still running), and parallel indexes.
- SQL Server Web Edition is a low-TCO option for Web hosting.
- Business Intelligence
- Introduced in SQL Server 2012 and focusing on Self Service and Corporate Business Intelligence. It includes the Standard Edition capabilities and Business Intelligence tools: PowerPivot, Power View, the BI Semantic Model, Master Data Services, Data Quality Services and xVelocity in-memory analytics
- SQL Server Workgroup Edition includes the core database functionality but does not include the additional services. Note that this edition has been retired in SQL Server 2012
- SQL Server Express Edition is a scaled down, free edition of SQL Server, which includes the core database engine. While there are no limitations on the number of databases or users supported, it is limited to using one processor, 1 GB memory and 10 GB database files (4 GB database files prior to SQL Server Express 2008 R2).It is intended as a replacement for MSDE. Two additional editions provide a superset of features not in the original Express Edition. The first is SQL Server Express with Tools, which includes SQL Server Management Studio Basic. SQL Server Express with Advanced Services adds full-text search capability and reporting services.[