Editions of SQL Server 2008

9/4/2010 5:41:44 PM

SQL Server 2008 is available in a variety of editions. Each edition is tailored to meet an assortment of needs based on the features required for various applications within an organization. Table1  lists the available editions of SQL Server.

Table 1. SQL Server 2008 Editions
SQL Server Edition Features
Enterprise, Developer, Evaluation Designed for the largest organizations to meet the most demanding applications. SQL Server Developer and SQL Server Evaluation editions contain all of the features of the SQL Server Enterprise edition, but have restrictions on how they can be deployed. The Developer edition can be used only to develop SQL Server applications and cannot be used for production. The Evaluation edition is time-limited to 180 days and can be used to evaluate SQL Server capabilities, but cannot be used in production or to develop applications.
Standard Contains most of the SQL Server features needed by small and medium-sized businesses.
Workgroup Suitable for departmental use or small organizations that need the basic functionality of a data management platform.
Express Free and redistributable with applications to provide local data storage. It can also be used as a basic server-based data storage platform.
Express with Advanced Services All of the capabilities of the Express edition plus limited Reporting Services capabilities along with an Express version of Management Studio.
Compact Free, redistributable embedded database built primarily for stand-alone applications.


Since the Developer and Evaluation editions of SQL Server contain the same feature support as the Enterprise edition, unless specifically noted, any discussion within this book that references the Enterprise edition also means Developer and Evaluation editions.

Since each edition is targeted at specific classes of applications as well as the needs of various-sized organizations, the main difference between SQL Server editions is the set of features and functionality that is supported.

For example, the Enterprise edition is the only edition that supports Data mining, partitioning, Database Snapshots, online or parallel maintenance operations, compression, resource governor, peer-to-peer replication, hot add hardware support, unlimited CPUs, and up to 16 nodes for failover clustering. The Express edition does contain support for SQL Server Integration Services, SQL Server Analysis Services, more than one CPU, databases greater than 4 GB, and more than 1 GB of RAM just to name a few.


Complete details on feature/functionality support for each edition of SQL Server can be found on the Microsoft Web site at

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