Microsoft has announced the release of SQL Server 2008 and that means it time for another post about SQL Server Express.

The press release indicated that SQL Express is already available, but those of you who have followed the link have found that it is not actually there. Nothing to worry about, has a dependency on the .NET Framework 3.5 SP1 and we need to coordinate the release to the web for both of these which will take a few more days. I'll blog about it when we release it and you can watch the Express web site for updates; when we release it, it will be available from that site.

There will be three editions of SQL Express, each one adding to the functionality of the previous one; you simply pick the edition that includes the set of functionality you need and install it. The information I posted about SQL Express RC0 is still valid, but I'm reproducing the feature comparison table here to include the third edition:

Feature

SQL Server 2008 Express

SQL Server 2008 Express with Tools

SQL Server 2008 Express with Advanced Services

Management

 

 

 

PowerShell Integration

Y (Separate installation)*

Y

Y

Policy Based Management

Y (manual only)**

Y (manual only)*

Y (manual only)**

Management Studio Basic

N

Y

Y

SQL Engine

 

 

 

Integrated Full Text Search

N

N

Y

Merge & Upsert

Y

Y

Y

New Data type support

 

 

 

Filestream support

Y

Y

Y

New Date & Time data types

Y

Y

Y

Geodetic data types

Y

Y

Y

Advanced Spatial Libraries

Y

Y

Y

Support for Spatial Standards

Y

Y

Y

New Tools

 

 

 

Import/Export Wizard

Y

Y

Y

Replication

 

 

 

Change Tracking

Y

Y

Y

Synchronization Services

Y (Separate installation)***

Y (Separate installation)***

Y

Reporting Services

 

 

 

Increase RS Memory Limit

N

N

Y

RS Word/Rich Text Export

N

N

Y

IIS Agnostic Report Deployment

N

N

Y

Enhanced Gauges & Charting

N

N

Y

Business Intelligence Developer's Studio

N

N

Y

* The SqlPS command line tool can be enabled in SQL Express by installing Windows PowerShell 1.0 before installing SQL Express.

** Policies can be created in SQL Express and run manually. There is no support for automated policy based management.

*** Synchronization Services support in SQL Express requires that you install the component separately from the SQL Server 2008 Feature Pack.

As you can see, SQL Express with Tools includes the core database engine and the basic version of Management Studio; this is the ideal edition for people who want the right tools for developing relational database applications. The advanced features such as Integrated Full Text Search, Reporting Services and BIDS are available in SQL Express Advanced. SQL Express with Tools will be delivered in the same architectures and with the same prerequisites as SQL Express Advanced, which are as follows:

SQL Express with Tools architecture

 

32-bit only installation package (x86 platforms only)

64-bit native installation packages (x64 platforms only)

 

 

 

SQL Express with Tools Prerequisites

.NET Framework 3.5 SP1

Windows Installer 4.5

Windows PowerShell 1.0

As with previous releases (SQL Server 2005) we will be releasing SQL Express 2008 in stages. SQL Express core will be released first, along with Visual Studio 2008 SP1, and the other two editions will follow about a month later. As I said, watch the Express web site and this blog for information about the release of these two additional editions.

 

- Mike