Install SQL Server Express


Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Express
Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Express

Two things:

First:  Like me, you may find that people who have been doing databases for years have strong preferences.  Depending on their bias, they often eschew all but their own personal preference.  Just remember this:  no matter how smart someone is, their opinions about databases are just that:  OPINIONS.    Here is a fact:  At Hewlett Packard, we used SQL Server to move 6 Terabytes of data around the world every day.  That is right, SIX Terabytes daily.   SQL Server performed nearly flawlessly in this task.  And that is a fact, not an opinion.  Oracle, MariaDB and other choices are probably ok, I have only dabbled with them so I cannot tell you what they  can do.  What I can tell you with 100% certainty is that Microsoft SQL Server enabled HP (and Compaq before that) to build 60 million computers (give or take) a year for the decades a year I was there, and they are still using it today.

Second, and on a more practical note, some folks have reported that when they install SQL Server Express 2012, they cannot connect to the database engine. I experienced this, and I discovered the reason was I misunderstood Microsoft’s instructions. I think the root cause of my problem was that on my first attempt, I installed SQL Management Studio by itself.  When I started over, I installed theSQLExpress32 database engine first, and the SQL Management Studio.  That worked.

  1. Go to
  2. Click “Download”
  3. For 32 bit, check the following:a. ENU\x86\SQLEXPR32_x86_ENU.exeb. ENU\x86\SQLManagementStudio_x86_ENU.exe
  4. For 64 bit,
  5. Save to directory
  6. As administrator, install these in this order: a. ENU\x86\SQLEXPR32_x86_ENU.exe
    1. On the “Instance Configuration”, remember the “Named Instance” you choose for later, because you will need it for configuring Apache and PHP
    2. On the “Server Configuration”, set SQL Server Browser to be “Automatic”
    3. On the “Database Engine Configuration”, check the radio button for “Mixed Mode”
      1. 1)  Be sure to write down your sa password!!!
      2. 2)  My hint is “funnydrink”
    4. Verify the installation by going to Services, and making sure you have these servicesrunning with these statuses, and these startup types (see figure below table):1)

    b. ENU\x86\SQLManagementStudio_x86_ENU.exe

    1. Choose “New SQL Server stand-alone Installation or add features to an existinginstallation”
    2. For “Installation Type”, select “Add features to an existing instance of SQL Server 2012