Microsoft just announced SQL Server 2017 as the latest version of SQL Server expected to be release sometime end-May/early-June this year.
Some of the key features highlighted includes:
- SQL Server on Linux
- Graph Database
- Native Python support
Looking at the "breakthrough" features, you will notice there really isn't a whole lot of new "breakthroughs" as compared to prior SQL Server releases (2016, 2014, 2012, etc.). It felt more like a minor version upgrade (like an expansion pack release for PC Games). Perhaps because this time around, this release cycle is 1 year versus the usual 2 - 3 years release cycle for SQL Server.
Too be fair, the emphasis here seems to be "Running on Linux" and that's no small feat to accomplish, especially since most of the database features that runs on Windows will be available in Linux. (Always On, TDE, Agent, Replication, etc.). There's one feature however that I am personally excited about, and that is Native Python support!
This is a fantastic move by Microsoft. By having native Python support, SQL Server is now even more accessible via one of the most popular programming languages known for it's versatility in Web based development, Machine Learning and AI... Anaconda for Machine Learning... anyone?
A fantastic resource regarding the announcement can be found at Channel 9
and also the latest SQL Server 2017 CTP 2.0 Preview is announced and the link to download it can be found here.