Microsoft has updated Azure SQL Data Warehouse with the ability to change the default collation when creating a new database. Customers now have simple access to over 3800 database collations within the portal.
For those unfamiliar, collations are essentially a set of rules to group character sets. They provide the locale, code page, sort order and more, and determine how the server reads the data. The new addition allows users to choose between different grouping types to suit specific needs.
Changing Collation and Different Collation Types
Changing SQL Data Warehouse's default collation type is fairly straightforward. In the provisioning experience, you'll see a new field, “Collation.” It's here that you write your collation types, and Azure then checks if its supported.
Of course, you need to know the name of the collation type to be able to type it in. You can find a full list by connecting to the master database of the logical server and running this command:
SELECT * FROM sys.fn_helpcollations();
While you're there, you can also check the current collation by typing “SELECT DATABASEPROPERTYEX(DB_NAME(), ‘Collation') AS Collation;”
New Azure SQL Data Warehouse Resource Blade
Microsoft's previous update for Azure SQL Data Warehouse came just under a week ago. It introduced a new, top-level resource blade to make database management easier.
The resource blade scans the SQL server for the following metrics automatically:
- Pricing tier
It displays these in a simple interface so that admins can quickly see the details of each database and make decisions such as renewing a subscription easier. You should see the blade in your sidebar now. If not, you can do the following: Hamburger Menu>More Services>Type SQL data warehouses>Click the star.
More information about the resource blade is available in this blog post. You can also read up on the collation changes here.