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Administering the SQL Server 2005 Database Engine

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This chapter focuses on administering the Database Engine component and managing the SQL server properties and database properties based on SQL Server 2005 Service Pack 2. Database Engine management tasks are also covered.
This chapter is from the book

Although SQL Server 2005 is composed of numerous components, one component is often considered the foundation of the product. The Database Engine is the core service for storing, processing, and securing data for the most challenging data systems. Likewise, it provides the foundation and fundamentals for the majority of the core database administration tasks. As a result of its important role in SQL Server 2005, it is no wonder that the Database Engine is designed to provide a scalable, fast, and highly available platform for data access and other components.

This chapter focuses on administering the Database Engine component and managing the SQL server properties and database properties based on SQL Server 2005 Service Pack 2. Database Engine management tasks are also covered.

Even though the chapter introduces and explains all the management areas within the Database Engine, you are directed to other chapters for additional information. This is a result of the Database Engine component being so large and intricately connected to other features.

What's New for the Database Engine with Service Pack 2

  • Upon the launch of SQL Server 2005, the installation of SQL Server 2005 Integration Services (SSIS) was warranted if organizations wanted to run maintenance plans. This has since changed. Integration Services is no longer required because maintenance plans are now a fully supported feature within the Database Engine.
  • Many enhancements have been made to maintenance plans in SQL Server 2005 with SP2 including support for environments with multiple servers, logging on to remote servers, and providing users with multiple schedules. Previously, maintenance plans could be run only on a server-only installation after SSIS was installed.
  • A new storage format is introduced with the release of SP2 to increase functionality and minimize disk space. The new format, known as vardecimal, stores decimal and numeric data as variable-length columns.
  • Logon triggers are included with SP2. In addition, SQL Server 2005 Enterprise Edition now has a Common Criteria Compliance Enabled option that follows common criteria for evaluating SP_CONFIGURE. See Common Criteria Certification in Books Online for more information.
  • Supported with SQL Server 2005 SP2 for the first time is the sqllogship application, which is responsible for operations involving backup, copy, and restore procedures. In addition, the application performs cleanup jobs for a log shipping configuration.
  • Plan cache improvements are part of the Database Engine enhancements with SP2, improving system performance and improving the use of the physical memory readily available to database pages. Plan cache improvements also can return XML query plans with an XML nesting level greater than or equal to 128 by using the new sys.dm_exec_text_query_plan table-valued function. This feature is supported in SQL Server 2005 Express Edition SP2.
  • SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) for Relational Engine features the following:
    • The Table.CheckIdentityValue() is supported only with the Express Edition of SQL Server 2005 and is involved in generating a schema name for an object name that meets the criteria.
    • The Column.AddDefaultConstraint() feature is also supported only with the Express Edition of SQL Server 2005. This feature is responsible for working against table columns for SQL Server 2000 database instances.
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