Microsoft launched release candidate zero (RC0) of SQL Server 2008 at its Tech Ed conference in Orlando today. David Hobbs-Mallyon told the Hypervisor, â€œThe software will soon be online for the community to download and test.â€ Although this is not a public test version, subscribers to Microsoft TechNet and other Microsoft community channels would have free access to the software, Hobbs-Mallyon added.
â€œWe’d previously provided a feature complete technology preview version, so most people would have seen the features and functionality,â€ he added. The RC0 version will include a few additions around failover clustering, but there is no sign of any performance improvements at this stage, said Hobbs-Mallyon, which suggests that some debugging code is still present in RC0 that would be removed before the software is finally launched. â€œWeâ€™re still committed to a launch date for the production version sometime in the Q3 period this year,â€ he said.
Microsoft has yet to provide a link to the RC0 download site. Call us cynics if you like, but we expect it to be a few days yet before the software is actually available for testing.