Tuesday, January 26, 2016

SQL Server 2016 - Instant File Initialization can be enabled during the installation

This is something I noticed during installation of SQL Server 2016 CTP 3.2. Not sure whether this was available with all the versions of CTP, however it is something invaluable that has been added to the installation.

Instance File Initialization allows SQL Server to allocate space (or initialize space) without zeroing out the required space, when we create databases, add files, growing files and restoring databases. Generally, when we doing these mentioned operations, it takes long time based on the size specified because the space required to be cleaned up by deleting all existing data (even though we have deleted our data) and filling with zeros. But enabling Instance File Initialization, time required can be significantly saved.

This requires few additional features to be enabled that may open a security threat. Since the existing data remains without wiping out, it opens an opportunity to smart users (or hackers) to read deleted data exist in the disk. If you can manage this, then you always get benefits enabling Instance File Initialization.

This shows how to enable it with previous version of SQL Server:

Now the best part it, we can immediately enable this during the installation SQL Server 2016.

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