If you need all the power and features of Microsoft SQL Server, you can get the real thing in the cloud. Providers like Amazon EC2 and Terremark offer Microsoft SQL Server (including 2008) in virtual machines for rent by the hour.
The biggest advantage of these full-strength cloud databases is that they're 100-percent compatible with SQL Server -- you can take existing applications and simply deploy them to the cloud without changes. Any application that connects to SQL Server can work with a database stored on an Amazon EC2 or Terremark server. Just as developers can reuse their skills as-is, DBAs can administer their cloud-based SQL Servers without a steep learning curve.
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