We’ve all been waiting a long time for SQL Server 20005 and not everyone has been able to get the betas to get an early look. Well now anyone can get their hands on the beta 2 of SQL Server 2005 Express edition.
The Express edition, what’s that? We never had a SQL Server 2000 express edition before; well we didn’t in name, but effectively we did in practice. It was called SQL Server 2000 MSDE (SQL Server 2000 Desktop Engine) edition, but for most it was just called MSDE. It was all rather confusing, many people didn’t realise MSDE was SQL Server 2000, albeit with certain restrictions and the all too mystifying concurrent workload governor.
SQL Server 2005 Express Edition (SQL Server Express) is an easy-to-use version of SQL Server 2005, designed for building simple, dynamic applications. Like its predecessor it is free to distribute, all though prior to its official release it’s not for production use. SQL Server Express includes enhancements to setup and manageability making it easier to use than MSDE. SQL Server Express also utilizes simpler and more scalable performance limits than MSDE and the concurrent workload governor has gone!
SQL Server Express manageability is delivered through another free download, only released last month we now have Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Express Manager. Designed for ease of use SQL Server 2005 Express Manager is filled with features to simplify, automate, and reduce the complexity of database support and administration. This new tool gives us a major advantage over MSDE, what’s more is it also gives us the ability to administer existing MSDE and SQL Server 2000 installations, but remember its still beta at the moment.
To give you some idea of the new features in SQL Server Express here’s a short comparison between MSDE and SQL Server Express.
SQL Server Express 2005
Application XCopy support
Feature not present
Easy deployment because of no MDAC
MDAC is part of install
Client Replication for Transactional, Merge, and snapshot
Merge/snapshot publication supported in addition to replication subscription
Robust Setup UI
Basic setup UI
Supports Windows 2000 SP4, Windows XP SP1, and Windows 2003
Supports Windows 98, Windows Me, Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows NT4, and Windows 2003
No CLR support
GUI tools provided
No GUI tools
Database size limit: 4G
Database size limit: 2G
1 CPU, 1GB RAM
2 CPU, 2GB RAM
Workload throttle enforced
Deep integration with Visual Studio
Basic integration with Visual Studio
You can download SQL Server 2005 Express Edition, associated articles and additional information from:
You can download SQL Server 2005 Express Manager from:
If you are a developer you may also be interested in the other members of the Express family, you can find these here: