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SQL Server 2012, the new version of Microsoft’s SQL Server, will automatically configure Soft Serve to use its built-in caching feature.
The feature, which automatically stores and retrieves cached content, has been a controversial topic among server developers and users for years.
It has been around since the beginning of the last decade and has been available in SQL Server 2008 and earlier.
In SQL Server 2014, the server will now automatically configure the caching feature when the server is restarted, according to Microsoft’s release notes.
Soft Serve uses the cache feature to ensure that the cached content is not cached or removed from the server when the client starts or restarts the server.
The feature will also ensure that cached content does not leave the database or other SQL Server storage on the server after a server restart.
Soft Serve uses a set of settings that are specified in the Soft Serve Configuration Settings for the client.
These settings are applied to the server’s Soft Serve configuration file (which is located at C:WindowsSysWOW64configsoft_serve.xml) and to the default configuration file for all applications.
The new settings require the use of the server-specific cmdlets in the client’s configuration file to automatically configure caching.
Soft serve is used to store and retrieve cached content on the servers, such as cached data for the .NET Framework, XML, and some applications.
In addition, it is used for caching SQL Server and SQL Server 2010-2013 data in the same manner.
Soft Serving also provides for caching of SQL Server databases on a local and/or remote server.
This feature is enabled by default on all server versions of SQL Engine, but not for the latest SQL Server releases.
For example, SQL Server 2003 and earlier databases are cached locally and are not accessed via the Soft Service.
The default configuration on SQL Server 2015, which is supported for SQL Server 2017 and earlier, does not include the caching functionality.
The only exception is SQL Server 2018, which includes the caching features.
Soft Serving will not be enabled by the default setting in SQL 2015.
To enable Soft Serving, the client must include a “soft serve” parameter in the SQL Server Configuration file, or the configuration file is updated to include the Soft Serving parameter.
The parameter must contain the name of the cache file.
The Cache File option will be enabled in the “System properties” pane, and the Server Name parameter will be disabled in the System properties pane.
Microsoft says the default value for the cache option is a list of files to store the cached data.
If there are more than one files to cache, the cache settings will be used for each file.
However, the list of directories to cache will be a list.
Microsoft says a cache setting can be used to specify a cache directory for any file, even one that is not used for any particular file.
Microsoft recommends configuring a cache option to specify the cache directory only if the server has more than a single database server or if the cache is only used for SQL Database.
If the client has a SQL Server 2005-2014 server, the default cache setting for the SQL Engine Cache File is disabled, and it will be required to add a cache parameter to the configuration for the server to have a separate set of directories for SQL Engine cache data.
The default cache option should be set to the value of the Server Directory parameter in Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2012 and Windows Server 2016.
Microsoft has a series of blog posts outlining how to configure Soft Serving.
Microsoft recommends that clients update their configuration to include Soft Serving in this case.
The Soft Serving configuration settings can be found in the Windows Server Configuration Properties pane.