Database 101-8: Which SQL Server version will give you the best performance?

by Ryan Huber

A continuation of the blog post Database 101-7: Stored Procedures and Triggers

Supported SQL Server Versions 

We currently support all of our FrameworkLTC applications on SQL Server versions from 2008 R2 up to 2016. 

However, and this could be some bad news if you’re unaware,

Microsoft is ending support for 2008 R2 in July 2019. 

That means you have 10 months to upgrade your SQL instance to a Microsoft supported version. 

The good news is that with 2014 and higher, SQL allows your buffer pool to grow to 128 GB on Standard Edition, which is double the size of 2008 R2. 

Before this change, if you wanted to double the size of your buffer pool, your only option was to use Enterprise Edition. If you’ve never looked, Enterprise is roughly 4x the cost of Standard when you license by core.

But now, you don’t have to spend that money on the extra cost of Enterprise. You simply buy some RAM, which is relatively cheap these days, stay on Standard Edition and upgrade to 2016. 

If you’re seeing SQL performance issues and are still a 2008 R2 holdout, upgrading to 2016 is a no-brainer.

SQL versions.png

Up next in this series: Database 101-9: Why should you care about database maintenance best practices? 


Ryan Huber is the Senior Database Architect at SoftWriters, a Pittsburgh-based company that offers pharmacy management software solutions to pharmacies serving the long-term care community. Ryan is our in-house SQL guru, providing technical expertise in every facet of database operations, including architecture and code review, resolving performance issues for customers, and formulating a strategy for existing and future product features and enhancements.