A Microsoft program manager reiterated the company's promise to release SQL Server 2005 SP3 before the end of 2008.
Nosheen Syed, lead program manager in Microsoft's SQL Server Sustained Engineering, said on the MSDN blog this week that Windows shops will see a public beta and final release of SQL Server 2005 SP3 this year.
In April, Francois Ajenstat, Microsoft's director of SQL Server marketing, told customers that a third service pack for SQL Server 2005 would be forthcoming.
Although SQL Server 2008 was just released, the vast majority of the SQL Server installed base runs either SQL Server 2000 or SQL Server 2005, and they probably will remain on these platforms for some time. One expert said that database administrators and managers have complained about receiving multiple cumulative updates, preferring instead to receive a service pack.
"There have been about seven or eight [cumulative updates] since SP2 and customers are fearful of loading those hot fixes," said Mark Kromer, a SQL Server expert and product manager at Primavera Systems Inc., a project management software company based in Bala Cynwyd, Pa. "With a service pack, you get the full support and testing of Microsoft."