Microsoft Centralizes their Online Product Documentation and Forums

Microsoft Corporation has now provisioned a new portal for all their application/framework documentation and are also placing the ability to add to that content at your fingertips. The new docs.microsoft.com rolled out recently and provides a jumping-off point for their documentation covering each of the following topic groups arranged by product line/focus:

  • SQL
  • Windows
  • Microsoft Azure
  • Visual Studio
  • Office
  • .NET
  • ASP.NET
  • Dynamics 365
  • Enterprise Mobility + Security
  • nuget
  • Xamarin

In addition to meaning you no longer navigate to msdn.microsoft.com the central portal leads to additional functionality and information sharing not offered before. Since we’re all SQL Server Professionals here this is where I’ll take us through the SQL portal for the remainder of the article.

SQL Documentation in One Place

From within the SQL portal you’ve access to new content for the SQL Server platform, including the SQL Server 2017 preview, SQL Server Reporting Services preview, and SQL Server on Linux portal (including all CTPs – community technology previews – as well as the initial release candidate.

Additionally you’re able to explore and create test content and follow hands-on demonstrations for SQL Azure Database, SQL Data Warehouse, and various data science experiments using Azure Machine Learning.

This is also you centralized area for SQL Server downloads for the following (current to the article publication):

  • SQL Server 2016
  • SQL Server 2017 Preview
  • SQL Server Reporting Services
  • SQL Server Management Studio versions
  • SQL Server Data Tools
  • Power Bi Report Server and associated tools
  • Official sample database for SQL Server: Wide World Importers

Conclusion

The streamlined sourcing of all SQL Server content in one place has been needed for years and scaling this to fit inside the larger pool of technology products from Microsoft is a welcome change. Of course for in-depth, experience-based content covering how-to, breaking news, community updates, and ingenious hacks on how to engineer SQL Server and the rest of the Microsoft Data Platform in ways that benefit you and your customers look no farther than SQL Server Pro.