SQL 2012: Installing SQL Express


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Prerequisite: Please have all windows updates completed until there is no more available.


Step 1. To get started, you will need to Download SQL Server 2012 R2  (CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD).  On that page, click on the appropriate bit type for the computer where you will be installing SQL Express and pick SQL Server Express Database w/tools (SQLEXPRWTfrom the from the list given: 
  • For 64bit Systems: ENU\x64\SQLEXPRWT_x64_ENU.exe(669.9 MB) 

  • For 32bit Systems: ENU\x86\SQLEXPRWT_x86_ENU.exe(706.1 MB) 

 You can also review detailed System Requirements here. 


Step 2. After you download the file, launch the exe file and let the install initialize until it comes to the SQL Server Installation Center.  Here you can start a new install or you can upgrade an older SQL version.  Pick the new installation button.  




Step 3. The install will now scan your computer to make sure that is has the necessary support files on it.  If it does not it will pause the install until these are installed.  Most machines will have all the files it needs.  Older machines will be missing Windows PowerShell or .Net Framework Updates. The PowerShell install can be found at this website.http://support.microsoft.com/kb/968929/en-us.  




Step 4. At the Feature Selection page, click Select All and then Next. 




  • Once you have installed all the applications SQL Express needs, Click Re-Run and the application will rescan your computer. 


  • Once it passed all applications, Hit Next.      


Step 5. The Instance Configuration is the next step.  The default named instance is SQLEXPRESS.  This can be changed to whatever you desire.  Be sure to make a note of what it is called if you change it from the default as it will be needed later.  When you are ready select Next. 



Step 6. The server configuration page is where the SQL Services are configured.  Under Account Name if either the SQL Server Database Engine or the SQL Server Browser is empty, then click on the drop down button and pick either the network or local service.  It is recommended that the Database Engine account name is the Network Service and the Server Browser account name is Local Service.   If there is no Network Service on the account name available, chose System.  Also verify that the Startup Type for both services is set to Automatic.  Verify that the options are configured as in the screen shots for best results.  




Step 7. At the Database Configuration screen, in the Account Provisioning tab, switch the Authentication mode to Mixed Mode (SQL Server Authentication and Windows Authentication).  Enter a password for the SQL Administrator.    In this screen the SQL administrator can be added.  The System Administrator is added by default.  Basic users will be added later. 


  • Also in the Database Configuration screen, in the Data Directories tab the default path to the databases can be altered if that is desired.  To do so find User database directory, User database log directory and change both of them to the desired location.  





Select Next when configuration is complete.  The Install will now proceed and finish.  This could take up to a half hour.  


Click here to proceed with Configuring SQL Express >

1 out of 1 found this helpful


  • Seth,


       3 questions. Is this the version of SQL Server we are now supposed to recommend/help our customers install for new server installations? If so, are we also going to upgrade everyone to this version of SQL? Finally, can we get this information in either a Word document and/or a pdf? Thanks.


    Larry J. Boyle

  • Seth, can we run Toolbox 7 with a SQL Server 2014 install rather than the 2012 express.

  • How do you export the data base from TB7 and import it back into SQL 2012 express? There are step by step instructions for the 2008 version but not the 2012. I have tried following the instructions for the 2008 version but they are quite a bit different from eachother. 

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