SQL Server 2012 Enterprise Edition supports a feature called database snapshots, which allow you to create a point-in-time, read-only copy of a database. In fact, you can create multiple snapshots of the same source database at different points in time. The actual space needed for each snapshot is typically much less than the space required for the original database because the snapshot stores only pages that have changed, as is discussed shortly.
Database snapshots allow you to do the following:
Turn a mirrored database into a reporting database. You can’t read from a mirrored database, but you can create a snapshot of this database and read from it.
Generate reports without blocking or being blocked by production operations. ...