In This Chapter
SQL Server is an enterprise-grade database platform designed to handle large datasets and intensive data processing. Microsoft has positioned SQL Server at the center of its BI Stack, enabling it with powerful features and add-ons specifically designed for business intelligence and analytics. It is critical for you to be familiar with SQL Server if you deal with datasets that are too large for standard desktop tools to handle. The data stored inside SQL Server can be integrated in a variety of front-end tools such as Excel, Access, and advanced reporting and dashboarding tools.
SQL Server is an extensive platform with dozens of components. In this section we focus on two of those components:
The SQL Server Relational Database Engine is a stand-alone service that can be installed on a personal computer or a dedicated server or cluster of servers. The specifications of the computer hardware required to run this service depend on the performance requirements. As your dataset size and your data processing requirements grow, your hardware requirements grow accordingly.
Start your development on your desktop and migrate to a larger machine for your production ...