It’s Good to Have Options: Running SQL Server on NOT Windows

Nick Harshbarger

Published On: July 16, 2020

Categories: SQL Server on Linux 0

If I had a nickel for every time I have heard someone say, "We live in interesting times," over the past few months, I would be writing this blog post from my new mountaintop mansion on the island of Maui. These are interesting times indeed, for a variety of reasons.

On May 8, 2019, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella participated in the Red Hat Summit keynote address to promote how well the Microsoft and Red Hat partnership was progressing. I was in the audience that day in Boston, and I clearly remember the strange "buzz" of the crowd as Satya walked on stage. I had a very distinct "One of these things is not like the other" moment. But as the talk between Satya and Red Hat CEO James Whitehurst unfolded it was clear that the partnership between Microsoft and Red Hat was real. The support of open source was just getting started in the Microsoft world.

Current Conditions Result in Accelerated Data Estate Modernization and Cloud Migrations

A little more than a year later, data professionals are reevaluating their SQL workloads, where those workloads live, and what platform they run on because of the significant pressures put on companies due to COVID-19. The concept of business-as-usual was buried at an undisclosed location in mid-March, and with it went some of the business practices that we no longer challenge and simply view as "best practice." Since then, there has been an acceleration of data estate modernization and migration to the cloud(s) because of these unique market pressures.

As both mid-sized and enterprise companies return to business, now is the time to evaluate all the options to crisis-proof data environments, including optimizing the cost/performance aspect of the data estate. This evaluation should go beyond on-premises versus cloud—consideration for running SQL workloads on Linux, specifically Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 8, should be included in the process as well.

This became even more apparent during a conversation with Red Hat Principal Product Manager Louis Imershein. As we were discussing a recent Red Hat blog post on optimizing performance with Microsoft SQL Server 2019 on RHEL 8, he shared the following:

“Customers tell us that Microsoft SQL Server on Linux is an excellent choice both on-premise and in the cloud. With Red Hat Enterprise Linux, SQL Server database administrators get the same behaviors they’re used to with a Windows deployment and benefit from lower cost per transaction, while system administrators reduce the amount of time they spend on support and maintenance.”

Consider Your Options for Future-Proofing Your Data Estate

As you move forward with reviews and planning for future-proofing your data environments, whether you are an enterprise or mid-market end user or a partner/consultant, all options should be considered to optimize the cost/performance aspect of your on-premises and cloud solutions. That should include a good look at SQL workloads on RHEL 8.

Learn More

If you are interested in learning more about running SQL workloads on Linux, be sure to join us on Tuesday, July 28th at 10am PDT for the free webinar, “Migrate Databases to SQL Server 2019 on Linux-Based Azure Platforms.” The webinar will be hosted by Louis Imershein and Microsoft Program Manager Amit Khandelwal, with guests SentryOne Principal Program Manager Kevin Kline and Datavail Senior Director of SQL Server Practice JP Chen.

Nick (@nicharsh) is the Senior Vice President of Cloud Alliances for SentryOne and is responsible for leading the SentryOne relationships with Microsoft, Amazon Web Services, and other cloud providers. Prior to joining SentryOne, Nick was Vice President of National & Strategic Accounts for Dictaphone - Healthcare Division. Previous experience includes sales management positions with Computer Associates, NEC Computer USA, Tegra Varityper, and Heath/Zenith Computer Systems. Nick holds a BA degree in Economics from University of Dayton in Dayton, OH.