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Azure SQL Data Warehouse New Features

Microsoft AzureAs the storage of data increases and the quantity of queries rise, Azure SQL Data Warehouse continues to enhance its price-performance, flexibility, and security.

Igor Stanko announced the newest upgrades last week, where we see new capabilities both in preview and general release.


The following features and new capabilities will all improve the price-performance of your Azure SQL Data Warehouse. Another step in their commitment to bringing the fastest analytics service with excellent value prices.

  • Interactive dashboarding with result-set caching – With result-set caching on, it will automatically cache results from repetitive queries, causing subsequent query executions to return results from the persisted cache that do not have full query execution.
  • Materialized views to improve performance – A materialized view improves the performance of complex queries (normally queries with joins and aggregations) while offering simple maintenance operations.
  • Fast scans with ordered clustered columnstore indexes – When querying columnstore indexes, only the column segments that are relevant to user queries are read from the disk.


As your business evolves so do your requirements. In fact, one of the large benefits of modern data warehousing is its ability to change and adapt. To continue to support the ever-developing needs of enterprise the following new features have been announced.

  • Prioritize workloads with workload importance (general availability) – A request can now be assigned five levels of importance. If a request with above_normal importance is scheduled, it gets access to resources before a request with the default normal
  • Manage and query JSON data (preview) – Support for querying JSON data is now enabled. It now effectively supports both relational and non-relational data, including joins between the two, while enabling users to use their traditional BI tools, such as Power BI.
  • Automatic statistics maintenance and update (preview) – Support has been extended for the creation of auto statistics by adding the ability to automatically refresh and continue statistics. As data warehouse tables get loaded and updated, the system now automatically detects and updates out-of-date statistics.


Azure SQL Data Warehouse provides one of the most advanced security and privacy features on the market. SQL Server, the core technology, has been the least vulnerable over the last eight years according to the NIST national vulnerabilities database but still continues to see enhancements.

  • Protect sensitive data with dynamic data masking (preview)Dynamic data masking (DDM) enables administrators and developers to govern access to company data, allowing sensitive data to be secure and restricted.


These new Azure SQL Data Warehouse features show the regular upgrade that we expect from Microsoft. Continually bringing features that will make a daily difference to those using it. You can read more about these features on Microsoft’s release announcement.

Ballard Chalmers can help you with your Azure Business Intelligence development needs using SQL Data Warehouse, Azure Data factory, Azure Analysis Services and Power BI. Get in contact here for more information or a quotation.

Post Terms: Express Logic | IOT | Microsoft

About the Author

Marketing Manager, Leah Monterroso, has been writing blogs and articles for the last six years. Since working with Ballard Chalmers, she has immersed herself in Microsoft tech news and bringing value to clients and the wider community through content.

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