Microsoft’s latest version of SQL, code named Denali, is currently in CTP. One of the most anticipated feature is something called HADRON. Basically, it is has been described as mirroring 2.0. The best features of HADRON as I can see compared to mirroring as it is in 2005/2008 are as follows:
- You can query the mirror (now known as a replica)
- You can have more than one replica
- Database are grouped into availability groups to ensure related databases always fail over together
- Support for replicating more than 10 databases
If you want a great preview, check out fellow MVP Brent Ozar’s post, SQL Server Denali Rocks!
From reading Brent’s post I gather Microsoft only plans to include this in the Enterprise version of SQL. That is too bad for the many customers running SQL Server Standard as traditionally there is a significant price jump to go from Standard to Enterprise. However, that is good news for the 3rd party replication vendors out there who are providing similar functionality today on SQL 2005/2008 on Standard and Enterprise Editions.
While it is not an exact duplicate of HADRON, a multisite cluster using SteelEye DataKeeper Cluster Edition for SQL Server gives you a great solution for HA/DR without requiring shared storage. So while we wait for Denali and all the application vendors to start supporting Denali you might want to have a look at what SteelEye DataKeeper Cluster Edition can do for you today!