Overview of SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition

Microsoft released the final version of SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition on April 21, 2010. SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition continues to ship in 4 different packages. One can download Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition from the following link. In this article we will take a look at SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition Features, Different Installation Options, Limitations, Hardware and Software Requirements and a worked installation a SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition.

Different Editions & Feature Supported in SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition

SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Editions

Features Available

Database Only

SQL Server Database Engine

Management Tools

SQL Server Management Studio Express

Database with Management Tools

SQL Server Database Engine
SQL Server Management Studio Express
Database Mirroring (Witness Only)
Snapshot, Transactional & Merge Replication (Subscriber Only)

Database with Advance Services

SQL Server Database Engine
SQL Server Management Studio Express
Full-Text Search
Reporting Services
Database Mirroring (Witness Only)
Snapshot, Transactional & Merge Replication (Subscriber Only)

For more information with respect to features which are supported in SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition, you can refer the following link Features Supported by the Editions of SQL Server 2008 R2.

Limitations in SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition

Since Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition is free, there are a few limitations. However, the good news is that Microsoft has increased the maximum database size in SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition from 4 GB to 10 GB. Some of the other important limitations in SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition are as below:

Limitation in SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition

Maximum Number of CPUs

1

Maximum Memory Used

1 GB

Maximum Database Size

10 GB

Hardware and Software Requirements for SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition

The below table provides an overview of the hardware and software requirements for SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition.

Software & Hardware Requirements for SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition

Operating System

Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP

Processor

Pentium III – compatible processor with a minimum speed of 1 GHz or a faster processor

RAM

Minimum 512 MB for SQL Server Express with Tools, and SQL Server Express with Advanced Services and 4 GB for Reporting Services that installs with SQL Server Express with Advanced Services

Hard Disk Space

2.2 GB of Disk Space

Prerequisites for SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition

SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition Setup will not install the below listed requirements for SQL Server Express, SQL Server Express with Tools, and SQL Server Express with Advanced Services. You need to install the below mentioned components manually before you run the SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition Setup.

SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition

Prerequisites

SQL Server Express

.NET Framework 2.0 SP2
Windows installer 4.5
On Windows Vista SP2 Install .NET Framework 3.5 SP1

SQL Server Express with Advanced Services

.NET Framework 3.5 SP1
Windows installer 4.5
Windows PowerShell 1.0

SQL Server Express with Management Tools

.NET Framework 3.5 SP1
Windows installer 4.5
Windows PowerShell 1.0

For more information with respect to the hardware and software requirements for installing SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition, you can refer the following link Hardware and Software Requirements for Installing SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition

Installing SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition

Once you have successfully installed all the prerequisites which are mentioned above; then double click SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition Executable to Launch the SQL Server Installation Center.

1. Click on SQL Server Installation Center’s Installation screen. To install SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition in a non clustered environment click on “New installation or add features to an existing installation” link as shown in the snippet below.



2. In the Setup Support Files screen click on Install button to install Setup Support Files for SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition.




3. In the Installation Type screen, select New installation or add shared features option to install a new instance of SQL Server 2008 R2 Express Edition. Click Next to continue with the installation.




4. In the License Terms screen, read the license agreement and then select the check box at the bottom of the screen to accept the licensing terms and conditions of the product. Click Next to continue with the installation.





5. In the Feature Selection Screen, select the components of SQL Server 2008 R2 Express with Advanced Services features to be installed. A brief description about each feature is shown in the right side panel when you select each of the features. Once you have selected the necessary features click Next to continue with the installation.



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