Microsoft Releases Hadoop Connector CTPs for SQL Server
Microsoft released two community technology preview (CTP) test versions of its Hadoop connectors today, one that works with Microsoft's current flagship SQL Server and other with its data warehouse product.
One of the connectors is designed to work with SQL Server 2008 R2 and is currently available for download here as a CTP test release. The other connector is for SQL Server Parallel Data Warehouse (PDW), but there's no download page. Microsoft's PDW customers can get a copy of the Hadoop connector CTP release for PDW by requesting it through Microsoft's customer support service, according to Microsoft's announcement.
The announcement indicates that the Hadoop connector for SQL Server 2008 R2 is also compatible for use with SQL Server code-named "Denali," Microsoft's next-generation relational database management system. Denali is currently available as a CTP3 release.
Both connectors are designed to enable two-way movement of data between the systems, including structured and unstructured data. The SQL to Hadoop (SQOOP) command-line tool is used by the connector to transfer data from the Hadoop File System to SQL Server. The connector also uses the bulk load/extract tool in PDW to quickly import or export data.
Microsoft had signaled its planned rollout of the two Hadoop connector CTP releases earlier this month. Hadoop is an Apache project-fostered open source framework for running applications on clusters using commodity hardware. Organizations might use Hadoop to run "big data" business intelligence-type operations. Practical applications for using Hadoop might include supply-chain management, sales analytics, call-center record analysis, Web event analysis and financial reporting.
Microsoft's announcement hinted that there will more to come next year on such big data integrations. The company already offers two other connector solutions: The Microsoft Informatica connector for SQL Server PDW and the Microsoft SAP Business Objects DI connector for SQL Server PDW. Both of those connectors are currently available by contacting Microsoft's customer support services.
Kurt Mackie is online news editor for the 1105 Enterprise Computing Group.