The Five Main SQL Server database trends to be prepared for in 2018

Likewise, while still in its infancy, container support helps SQL Server move toward a continuous integration and continuous deployment cycle that fits better into the growing DevOps development paradigm. While it may still be a bit early to bring SQL Server containers into production, they’re great for developers and testers.


Containers can turn SQL Server into a component that is easy and quick to deploy, with no lengthy installation needed. You also have the option of combining a SQL Server instance and its data into a single package, making your SQL Server development environment easy to recreate and share with different teams.


The new SQL Server software update cycle. One of the biggest pain points in IT today is keeping up with security patches and software updates — and one of the biggest new database trends that DBAs will need to cope with in 2018 is the changing update cycle for SQL Server.


Starting with SQL Server 2017, Microsoft is no longer using the old model under which cumulative updates (CUs) were released every two months and service packs (SPs) containing all the fixes from the preceding CUs were released once a year.


The company won’t deliver SPs anymore — there will only be CUs, which will be delivered more often at first, and then less frequently. At this point, Microsoft plans to issue a CU every month for the first 12 months after a major version of SQL Server is released, and then once per quarter for the remainder of the five-year product lifecycle. For older releases, the last SP establishes a new product baseline; CUs will then be provided every 12 months or so.