I was surprised to see a 25 year celebration for SQL Server at Ignite recently. It was also a 25 year celebration for Bob Ward. If you haven’t met Bob or seen him speak, make an effort to do so. He does an amazing job and can likely answer most any question you pose about SQL Server. I didn’t know Bob had been at Microsoft for 25 years, but that’s an impressive milestone and I’ll congratulate him when I see him in person later this month at the SQL in the City Chicago summit (register now:code Steve).
The surprise for me was that I installed SQL Server in 1991, which by my calculations, was 27 years ago. It was in the fall of 1991 that a corporate development department came down to our remote site and had us install a SQL Server in preparation for a new application that we’d install on Dec 31, 1991.
However, if you read the celebration post from Amit Banerjee, you will see that he notes in 1993 SQL Server released on Windows NT. That’s true, and I remember getting a wide box of NT 3.1 Advanced Server manuals that I dutifully read since I hadn’t been thrilled with the performance and stability of SQL Server to this point.
You see, in 1991, we installed SQL Server on OS/2 1.3, which was horribly unstable and unable to handle the load of our application. I’m not sure if the SQL Server port from Sybase was the issue or OS/2 wasn’t stable, or the hardware wasn’t sufficient. Suffice it to say that I was thrilled when we migrated in 1992 to OS/2 20 and later 2.1, which were more stable. Then I could stop working 100 hour weeks.
Despite a poor first impression from me, I grew to really enjoy SQL Server and switched from networking and infrastructure to database work. The rest, as they say, is history.