Today, Microsoft made the SQL Server 2008 R2 November CTP available to MSDN and TechNet subscribers. The November CTP will be available to non-subscribers on Wednesday, November 11th. You can download the SQL Server 2008 R2 November CTP from www.microsoft.com/sqlserver/2008/en/us/R2Downloads.aspx.

According to Microsoft, "The November CTP of SQL Server 2008 R2 adds to features previously made available including: Application and Multi-server Management; SMP scale up with support for up to 256 logical processors; Report Builder 3.0 with support for geospatial visualization; and StreamInsight, a low-latency complex event processing (CEP) platform." In addition, the November CTP offers a first look at Master Data Services, data compression, enhanced virtualization support, and functionality in SQL Server 2008 R2’s Datacenter edition. Unfortunately, it doesn't look like many of us will get to test out PowerPivot for Excel any time soon—it will be available only as a limited trial (along with PowerPivot for SharePoint) for Microsoft Office 2010 beta testers later this month.

To learn more about SQL Server 2008 R2, visit www.microsoft.com/sqlserver/2008/en/us/R2.aspx.

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