I'm looking for a good resource that gives a breakdown of the feature differences between SQL Server 2017 Enterprise and Standard editions? I want to make sure there's no gotchas or I miss anything truly beneficial by going with Standard.

I've read over the licensing guide from Microsoft, but is there any other notable feature differences it doesn't cover?

What are the vaguely described feature differences like "Advanced Adaptive Query Processing", "Enterprise Data Management", and "Advanced Security", etc?


There are several tables through this document which compare features across all editions of SQL Server 2017 : Editions and supported features of SQL Server 2017


Asking one question here asking for ALL of the differences is a lot like me asking you, "Well, which features of SQL Server do you use?" It's such a tough question to answer because it's so huge (which is also why this question is likely to get closed, heh.)

You'll be better off asking individual specific questions about each of the feature/edition restrictions that you don't understand.

For example, if you want to know what "Advanced Adaptive Query Processing" is, read the documentation pages on Adaptive Query Processing, and then ask questions specific to that feature.

In my experience, the features that usually cause folks to jump to Enterprise Edition are:

  • Leveraging more than 24 CPU cores
  • Leveraging more than 128GB memory
  • Transparent Database Encryption (TDE) - if you're storing personally identifiable data that could put you on the front page of the paper if someone got a snapshot of your database, then the Enterprise Edition costs just kinda are what they are

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