Author Archives: James Serra

About James Serra

James is a big data and data warehousing solution architect at Microsoft. Previously he was an independent consultant working as a Data Warehouse/Business Intelligence architect and developer. He is a prior SQL Server MVP with over 25 years of IT experience.

IoT Hub vs. Event Hub

There can sometimes be confusion, in IoT scenarios, between IoT Hub and Event Hub, as they can both be valid choices for streaming data ingestion.  My Microsoft colleague, Steve Busby, an IoT Technology Specialist, is here to clear up the … Continue reading

Posted in Azure, Cortana Intelligence Suite | 1 Comment

Microsoft Products vs Hadoop/OSS Products

Microsoft’s end goal is for Azure to become the best cloud platform for customers to run their data workloads.  This means Microsoft will provide customers the best environment to run their big data/Hadoop as well as a place where Microsoft … Continue reading

Posted in Hadoop, SQLServerPedia Syndication | Leave a comment

Create quick queries quickly with SSAS in Azure

In a perfect world a data warehouse would always return all queries very quickly, no matter what the size or complexity of the data warehouse.  But the reality is that sometimes we won’t get the performance we need from the … Continue reading

Posted in SQLServerPedia Syndication, SSAS | 6 Comments

Data gateway confusion

Microsoft has created data gateways as a way that cloud products such as Power BI and Azure Machine Learning can access on-prem data, often called a hybrid model.  This is most useful for companies that do not want to put … Continue reading

Posted in SQLServerPedia Syndication | 2 Comments

What is HTAP?

I have been seeing the term “HTAP” mentioned a lot recently, and I thought I would briefly explain the term.  HTAP stands for Hybrid Transactional and Analytical Processing. HTAP is used to describe the capability of a single database that can … Continue reading

Posted in SQLServerPedia Syndication | 1 Comment

Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) Calculator

For a long time clients would ask me how to determine the cost savings by migrating their applications and databases to Azure.  I never had a good answer until now: The Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) Calculator.  Now in preview, just … Continue reading

Posted in Azure, SQLServerPedia Syndication | 3 Comments

Azure Advisor

Azure Advisor is a really cool personalized recommendation engine that provides you with proactive best practices guidance on High Availability, Security, Performance and Cost when using Azure.  It is in public preview.  Learn more about Azure Advisor here. Azure Advisor … Continue reading

Posted in Azure, SQLServerPedia Syndication | Leave a comment

Analytics Platform System 2016 Release

Microsoft has a new release for the Analytics Platform System (APS).  This appliance update is called APS 2016 and has been released to manufacturing and is now generally available.  APS is Microsoft’s scale-out Massively Parallel Processing fully integrated system for … Continue reading

Posted in PDW/APS, SQLServerPedia Syndication | 4 Comments

PASS Summit Announcements: PolyBase enhancements

Microsoft usually has some interesting announcements at the PASS Summit, and this year was no exception.  I’m writing a set of blogs covering the major announcements.  Next up is the PolyBase enhancements. PolyBase is a technology that accesses and combines both … Continue reading

Posted in PolyBase, SQLServerPedia Syndication | 2 Comments

Microsoft Connect(); announcements

Microsoft Connect(); is a developer event from Nov 16-18, where plenty of announcements are made.  Here is a summary of the data platform related announcements: Azure Data Lake Analytics is generally available in two datacenters in US (EMEA coming in Feb). … Continue reading

Posted in Data Lake, HDInsight, SQL Server, SQLServerPedia Syndication | Leave a comment