With the release date for 2016 finally announced
Everyone can start gearing up to gaze upon its far shores from the 2008R2 instance they can’t or won’t upgrade for various reasons. I’m excited for a lot of the improvements and enhancements coming along, and generally hope I’m wrong about customer adoption.
One annoyance with the new release is the increase in CPU capacity for Standard Edition, with no increase in RAM capacity. You can now have up to 24 cores on your Standard Edition box. Yep, another $16k in licensing! And they’ll all be reading data from disk. Don’t kid yourself about Buffer Pool Extensions saving the day; nothing is going to beat having your data cached in memory. How many people on Standard Edition have CPU bound workloads?
Alright, now set MAXDOP and Cost Threshold to the right values. Anyone left?
Alright, check your missing index requests. Anyone left?
But Enterprise needs to be different
It’s already different. It already has a ton of features, including a plethora that smaller shops can’t or won’t ever touch. Full blown AGs, Hekaton, Page/Row Compression, ColumnStore, Online Index Create/Rebuild, Encryption, really, the list goes on and on. And c’mon, the HA/DR parts are what define Enterprise software to me.
Having a fast ship is way different from having a ship that’s hard to sink.
So what’s the solution?
Microsoft needs to make money. I get it. There’s no such thing as a free etc. But do they really need to make Enterprise licensing money off of people who will never use a single Enterprise feature? Should a small shop with a lot of data really have to make a $5000 jump per core just to cache another 128-256GB of data? That seems unreasonable to me. RAM is cheap. Licensing is not.
I wouldn’t suggest à la carte pricing, because licensing is already complicated enough. What could make sense is offering higher memory limits to shops with Software Assurance. Say up to 512GB on Standard Edition. That way, Microsoft can still manage to keep the lights on, and smaller shops that don’t need all the pizzaz and razzmatazz of Enterprise Edition can still hope to cache a reasonable amount of their data.
If Microsoft doesn’t start keeping up with customer reality, customers may start seeking cheaper and less restrictive solutions.
Thanks for reading!
Brent says: Adding 8 more cores to Standard Edition answers a question no one was asking. It’s almost like raising the number of available indexes per table to 2,000 – hardly anybody’s going to actually do that, and the ones who do are usually ill-advised. (Don’t get me wrong – there’s some good stuff in 2016 Standard – but this ain’t one of ’em.)