There was a fairly well-known Powerpoint slide that attempted to summarize the new SQL Server 2005 features in bullet points of a single slide. By the release, there were so many new features, the feature list had to be rendered in a 5-point font to fit. At TechEd 2007, Microsoft presented the new features of SQL Server 2008 (was: SQL Server Katmai) in an analogous format. Although it’s not yet down to a 5-point font, there are quite a few impressive new features on tap. Here’s the list, modulo (my own) potential spelling errors. There is currently a CTP of SQL Server 2008 as well as beta1 of the next version of Visual Studio.NET (Orcas) and the ADO.NET synchronization framework. The features I can find in the current betas have asterisks. [Note: Asterisks updated for the July CTP]


Transparent Data Encryption
External Key Management
Data Auditing
Pluggable CPU
Transparent Failover for Database Mirroring
Declarative Management Framework*
Server Group Management*
Streamlined Installation*
Enterprise System Management*
Performance Data Collection*
System Analysis*
Data Compression
Query Optimization Modes
Resource Governor
Entity Data Model*
LINQ*
Visual Entity Designer*
Entity Aware Adapters


SQL Server Change Tracking*
Synchronized Programming Model*
Visual Studio Support*
SQL Server Conflict Detection
FILESTREAM data type
Integrated Full Text Search
Sparse Columns
Large User Defined Types*
Date/Time Data Type*
LOCATION data type
SPATIAL data type
Virtual Earth Integration
Partitioned Table Parallelism
Query Optimizations*
Persistent Lookups
Change Data Capture*
Backup Compression
MERGE SQL Statement*
Data Profiling
Star Join*


Enterprise Reporting Engine*
Internet Report Deployment
Block Computations
Scale out Analysis
BI Platform Management
Export to Word and Excel
Author reports in Word and Excel
Report Builder Enhancements
TABLIX
Rich Formatted Data
Personalized Perspectives
… and many more


It should be straightforward to eventually produce a 5-point slide because these features haven’t made “the list” yet.


Grouping Sets*
Table-valued parameters*
Table-valued constructors*
“Delighters” (1-stmt variable declaration/assignment, increment operators)*
HierarchyID data type*
Large User Defined Aggregates
New versions of ODBC driver*, OLE DB provider*, and ADO.NET data provider
SQLCE Version 3.5*
Database Mirroring Enhancements*
Data Mining Algorithm Enhancements*
SSIS support for the new date/time data types*
SSIS VSTA support*


That’s an impressive set of features. And I’m pretty certain, since this is a summary, that’s there are more to come.