The CTP (aka beta) of SQL Server 2008 R2 Service Pack 1 is out & available. Go here for details and to download. Microsoft’s community techology preview program is our way of releasing betas to the community for you to test out, try out and provide feedback as part of the release process. This is not a production-ready release and so do not use this yet on any production SQL Server 2008 R2 databases yet. But please do download it and give us your feedback on your development and test boxes.
The SP1 for 2008 R2 is essentially CU 1 – 6, so this is good news for those who have waited for an SP instead of actively loading each cumulative update. You will also get a few new features which are listed for you in the product page blog link I listed above. Some of the things that I noticed are new in-place upgrade methods for Data-Tier Application packs and the ability to control Disk Cache for PowerPivot.