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SQL Server Opens Up to Java

Microsoft yesterday released the final JDBC Driver 4.0 for SQL Server after three community technology previews, continuing the effort to open its technology to better accommodate programmers using PHP, ODBC and even Hadoop, among others.

The driver provides access to SQL Server editions going back to SQL Server 2005 -- and SQL Azure -- from any Java application or applet. The Type 4 JDBC driver provides connectivity via standard JDBC APIs in Java SE 5 and Java SE 6.

Program manager Shamitha Reddy announced the release in a blog post, highlighting four new features:

  • Pure Java Kerberos -- Kerberos was added to the list of authentication options for non-Windows users.
  • Always On -- Instead of database mirroring, users can choose to use Always On Availability Groups, explained here.
  • Correlated Tracing with XEvents -- The SQL Server Extended Event general event-handling system that correlates data from different sources sports a new UI and lets users track driver-related actions.
  • FormatID change in XA Transactions -- The new driver supports Java Platform, Enterprise Edition/JDBC 2.0 optional distributed transactions, sometimes called "eXtended Architecture" transactions. Responding to customer feedback, Microsoft changed the way the FormatID field is used so it can be used in all XA transactions, Reddy said.

Other enhancement listed by Reddy include better cloud (SQL Azure) support and support for UTF-16 Unicode character encoding and also for sparse columns ("ordinary columns that have an optimized storage for null values," according to MSDN), along with bug fixes. You can get it here.

What do you think about Microsoft's commitment to interoperability? Comment here or drop me a line.

Posted by David Ramel on 03/07/2012 at 1:15 PM


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