Microsoft SQL Server is a relational database management system developed by Microsoft. As a database, it is a software product whose primary function is to store and retrieve data as requested by other software applications, be it those on the same computer or those running on another computer across a network (including the Internet). There are at least a dozen different editions of Microsoft SQL Server aimed at different audiences and for different workloads (ranging from small applications that store and retrieve data on the same computer, to millions of users and computers that access huge amounts of data from the Internet at the same time).
SQL Server 2005
SQL Server 2005 (formerly codenamed "Yukon") was released in October 2005. It included native support for managing XML data, in addition to relational data. For this purpose, it defined an xml data type that could be used either as a data type in database columns or as literals in queries.
SQL Server 2008
SQL Server 2008 (formerly codenamed "Katmai") was released on August 6, 2008 and aims to make data management self-tuning, self organizing, and self maintaining with the development of SQL Server Always On technologies, to provide near-zero downtime. SQL Server 2008 also includes support for structured and semi-structured data, including digital media formats for pictures, audio, video and other multimedia data
SQL Server 2008 R2
SQL Server 2008 R2 (formerly codenamed "Kilimanjaro") was announced at TechEd 2009, and was released to manufacturing on April 21, 2010. SQL Server 2008 R2 adds certain features to SQL Server 2008 including a master data management system branded as Master Data Services, a central management of master data entities and hierarchies