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SQL Server Versions: Choose Your Own Adventure

Brent Ozar has a guide to help you choose which version of SQL Server to install:

Wait! Before you install that next SQL Server, hold up. Are you sure you’re using the right version?
I know, management wants you to stay on an older build, and the vendor says they’ll only support older versions, but now’s your chance to make your case for a newer version – and I’m gonna help you do it.
I’m going to go from the dark ages forward, making a sales pitch for each newer version.

My branch logic is easier: if you need the data today, SQL Server 2017. If you need the data later this year, SQL Server 2019. If you hate your company and yourself, SQL Server 6.5.