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SQL Updates Newsletter – July 2017

Recent Releases and Announcements


Issue Alert

  • Critical : Do NOT delete files from the Windows Installer folder. C:\windows\Installer is not a temporary folder and files in it should not be deleted. If you do it on machines on which you have SQL Server installed, you may have to rebuild the operating system and reinstall SQL Server.
  • Critical: Please be aware of a critical Microsoft Visual C++ 2013 runtime pre-requisite update that may be required on machines where SQL Server 2016 will be, or has been, installed.
    • If KB3164398 or KB3138367 are installed, then no further action is necessary. To check, run the following from a command prompt:
      • powershell get-hotfix KB3164398
      • powershell get-hotfix KB3138367
    • If the version of %SystemRoot%\system32\msvcr120.dll is 12.0.40649.5 or later, then no further action is necessary. To check, run the following from a command prompt:
      • powershell "get-item %systemroot%\system32\msvcr120.dll | select versioninfo | fl"
    • Important: If the Update Cache folder or some patches are removed from this folder, you can no longer uninstall an update to your SQL Server instance and then revert to an earlier update build.
      • In that situation, Add/Remove Programs entries point to non-existing binaries, and therefore the uninstall process does not work. Therefore, Microsoft strongly encourages you to keep the folder and its contents intact.
    • Important: You must precede all Unicode strings with a prefix N when you deal with Unicode string constants in SQL Server
    • Important: Default auto statistics update threshold change for SQL Server 2016
    • Monitoring automatic tuning actions using XEvents
      • Automatic tuning detects regressed plans, but it will not apply last know good plan if the difference between performance of the regressed plan and last known good plan is not high enough.
      • Whenever automatic tuning detects that a plan has potentially regressed and compares performance of the current plan with the last known good plan, XEvent automatic_tuning_plan_regression_detection_check_completed is fired. Field is_regression_detected means that SQL Server has identified possible plan change regression; is_regression_corrected means that regression is corrected.
    • Handling data encoding issues while loading data to SQL Data Warehouse
      • This blog is intended to provide insight on some of the data encoding issues that you may encounter while using Polybase to load data to SQL Data Warehouse.
      • If the data is formatted using either the UTF-8 or UTF-16 encoding standard, you can use Polybase to load the data. However, the format of your data is dependent on the encoding options supported by the source system. Some systems do not provide support for UTF-8 or UTF-16 encoding. If the data you are working with is formatted in an alternate format, such as ISO-8859-1, then being able to convert the data to UTF-8/UTF-16 format can save valuable time and effort.
      • The sample bash script on Ubuntu VM that was used to convert the encoding on the data files automatically uses the iconv command where the source file encoding is specified as ISO-8859-1 and the target file encoding is specified as UTF-8
    • Demo: Identify and fix plan change regression in SQL Server 2017 RC1


Recent Blog Posts and Articles



Recent Training and Technical Guides


Monthly Script and Tool Tips


Fany Carolina Vargas | SQL Dedicated Premier Field Engineer | Microsoft Services