SQL Server 2008 R2 is Microsoft's premier enterprise data platform. In addition to its highly scalable relational database engine, SQL Server 2008 R2 also provides industry-leading business intelligence (BI) capabilities with its SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS), SQL Server Analysis Services (SSAS), and SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS) subsystems. If you're using one of the earlier editions of SQL Server or are considering moving from a competing database such as Oracle or DB2, then this article will help you choose the edition of SQL Server 2008 R2 that's right for your organization. You'll learn about the features in the different editions of SQL Server 2008 R2, as well as the hardware and software requirements for each edition.

Related: Upgrading to SQL Server 2008 R2

Common Hardware Requirements

The SQL Server relational database engine is designed to support both large enterprise databases and small-scale databases. As such, SQL Server 2008 R2's hardware requirements are minimal. SQL Server 2008 R2 can run on both 32-bit and 64-bit systems. Microsoft requires a minimum processor speed of 1.4GHz but recommends systems with 2.0GHz or faster. Almost all modern systems—even desktops and laptops—meet these requirements. In addition, Microsoft recommends that the server system support at least 800  600 video resolution.

Related: SQL Server 2008 R2 New Features

The hard disk requirements vary according to the features installed. The following table lists the disk storage requirements for the main SQL Server features.

SQL Server 2008 R2 Hard Disk Space Requirements

Feature Disk Space Requirements
Database Engine, Replication, and Full-Text Search 711MB
SSAS and data files 345MB
SSRS and Report Manager 304MB
SSIS 591MB
Client components (other than Books Online and SSIS tools) 1,823MB
SQL Server Books Online 157MB

Source: "Hardware and Software Requirements for Installing SQL Server 2008 R1"

Common Software Requirements

The different editions of SQL Server share several common software requirements. First, the SQL Server setup program requires Microsoft Windows Installer 4.5 or later. All the x86 and x64 editions of SQL Server, except the SQL Server Express versions, require .NET Framework 3.5 SP1. SQL Server 2008 R2 Express requires .NET Framework 2.0. The IA-64 version also requires .NET Framework 2.0. In addition, Microsoft Internet Explorer (IE) 6 SP1 or later is required. For client connectivity, SQL Server 2008 R2 also requires the Shared Memory, Named Pipes, or TCP/IP network protocols.

SQL Server Editions and Features

There are several different editions of SQL Server. Each edition is designed to meet a different level of requirements, and each edition has its own set of features and support for different operating systems. The following sections highlight the main features in each edition of SQL Server 2008 R2, including the operating systems that are supported by each edition.

SQL Server 2008 R2 Datacenter

SQL Server 2008 R2 Datacenter provides the complete feature set available in SQL Server 2008. The Datacenter edition provides the maximum scalability of the different SQL Server 2008 R2 editions and is designed for the largest enterprise implementations that require maximum scalability. The Datacenter edition is priced at $54,990 per processor or $13,748 if you have Software Assurance (SA). The features available in SQL Server 2008 R2 Datacenter include:

  • StreamInsight Premium real-time event processing
  • Support for 32-bit and 64-bit processors
  • Support for up to 256 logical CPUs
  • Support for up to 2TB of RAM (OS max)
  • Database size 524PB
  • Support for 50 instances
  • Hot-add CPU
  • Hot-add RAM
  • Database partitioning
  • Database compression
  • Transparent database encryption
  • Resource Governor
  • Partition table parallelism
  • All database mirroring modes
  • Failover clustering support for up to 16 nodes
  • Database snapshots
  • Fast recovery
  • Online indexing
  • Online restore
  • Distributed, partitioned views
  • Parallel index operations
  • Fine-grained auditing
  • Oracle replication publishing
  • P2P transactional replication
  • SSIS advanced transformations
  • Change data capture (CDC)
  • SSAS shared and scalable databases
  • SSAS Star Join Query Optimization
  • SSAS Proactive Caching
  • SSAS partitioned cubes and distributed partitioned cubes
  • SSAS writeback dimensions
  • SSAS linked measures and dimension
  • SSRS scale-out Web farms
  • SSRS infinite click-through
  • SSRS data-driving subscriptions

Operating Systems Supported by IA-64 Edition

Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit Itanium
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit Itanium
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit Itanium Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit Itanium Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit Itanium Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit Itanium Enterprise

Operating Systems Supported by x64 Edition

Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 x64 for Windows Essential Server Solutions
Windows 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Web

Operating Systems Supported by x86 Edition

Windows Server 2003 SP2 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Standard
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Standard
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Datacenter without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Enterprise without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Standard without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Web
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Datacenter without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Enterprise without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Standard without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 R2 x64 for Windows Essential Server Solutions

SQL Server 2008 R2 Enterprise

SQL Server 2008 R2 Enterprise is designed for large, highly scalable enterprise implementations. IT provides support from almost all of SQL Server 2008 R2's features except for StreamInsight Premium. Notably, it provides support for all of the high-availability features. The Enterprise edition is priced at $27,495 per processor ($6,874 with SA) or $8,592 per server ($2,148 with SA), including 25 CALs. The features that are available in SQL Server 2008 R2 Enterprise are:

  • Support for 32-bit and 64-bit processors
  • Support for up to eight physical CPUs
  • Support for up to 2TB of RAM
  • Database size 524PB
  • Support for 50 instances
  • Hot-add CPU
  • Hot-add RAM
  • Database partitioning
  • Database compression
  • Transparent database encryption
  • Resource Governor
  • Partition table parallelism
  • All database mirroring modes
  • Failover clustering support for up to 16 nodes
  • Database snapshots
  • Fast recovery
  • Online indexing
  • Online restore
  • Distributed, partitioned views
  • Parallel index operations
  • Fine-grained auditing
  • Oracle replication publishing
  • P2P transactional replication
  • SSIS advanced transformations
  • CDC
  • SSAS shared and scalable databases
  • SSAS Star Join Query Optimization
  • SSAS Proactive Caching
  • SSAS partitioned cubes and distributed partitioned cubes
  • SSAS writeback dimensions
  • SSAS linked measures and dimension
  • SSRS scale-out Web farms
  • SSRS infinite click-through
  • SSRS data-driving subscriptions

Operating Systems Supported by IA-64 Edition

Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit Itanium
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit Itanium
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit Itanium Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit Itanium Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit Itanium Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit Itanium Enterprise

Operating Systems Supported by x64 Edition

Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Web
Windows 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 R2 x64 for Windows Essential Server Solutions

Operating Systems Supported by x86 Edition

Windows Server 2003 SP2 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Standard
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Standard
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Datacenter without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Enterprise without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Standard without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Web
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Datacenter without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Enterprise without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Standard without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Web
Windows 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 R2 x64 for Windows Essential Server Solutions

SQL Server 2008 R2 Standard

SQL Server 2008 R2 Standard provides the core SQL Server 2008 feature set but doesn't provide the enterprise-oriented features found in SQL Server 2008 R2 Enterprise. SQL Server Standard is priced at $7,171 per processor ($1,793 with SA) or $898 ($224 with SA) per server with five CALs. SQL Server 2008 R2 Standard includes a number of features that aren't available in the Workgroup, Web, or Express editions of SQL Server 2008 R2. SQL Server 2008 R2 Standard features include:

  • Support for 32-bit and 64-bit processors
  • Support for up to four physical CPUs
  • Support for up to 64GB of RAM
  • Database size 524PB
  • Support for 16 instances
  • SSAS
  • SSIS
  • SSRS
  • SharePoint integration

Operating Systems Supported by x64 Edition

Windows XP Professional SP2 x64
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Vista SP2 Ultimate x64
Windows Vista SP2 Enterprise x64
Windows Vista SP2 Business x64
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Datacenter without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Enterprise without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Standard without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 SP2 for Windows Essential Server Solutions
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Foundation Server
Windows 7 x64 Ultimate
Windows 7 x64 Enterprise
Windows 7 x64 Professional
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 R2 x64 for Windows Essential Server Solutions
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Foundation Server

Operating Systems Supported by x86 Edition

Windows XP Professional SP3
Windows XP SP3 Tablet
Windows XP SP2 x64 Professional
Windows XP SP3 Media Center 2002
Windows XP SP3 Media Center 2004
Windows XP SP3 Media Center 2005
Windows XP Professional SP3 Reduced Media
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Standard
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Standard
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Vista SP2 Ultimate
Windows Vista SP2 Enterprise
Windows Vista SP2 Business
Windows Vista SP2 Ultimate x64
Windows Vista SP2 Enterprise x64
Windows Vista SP2 Business x64
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Datacenter without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Enterprise without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Standard Server
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Standard Server without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Web
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Datacenter without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Enterprise without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Standard without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 SP2 for Windows Essential Server Solutions
Windows Server 2008 R2 x64 for Windows Essential Server Solutions
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Foundation Server
Windows 7 Ultimate
Windows 7 Enterprise
Windows 7 Professional
Windows 7 x64 Ultimate
Windows 7 x64 Enterprise
Windows 7 x64 Professional
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit Foundation Server

SQL Server 2008 R2 Web Edition

SQL Server 2008 R2 Web Edition is designed to meet the database needs of web hosting providers. SQL Server 2008 R2 Web Edition is designed to provide a highly scalable relational database platform for web hosting providers. It includes support for SSRS but not for the other BI subsystems. It's also licensed differently than the other editions of SQL Server. SQL Server 2008 R2 Web Edition is priced at $3,500 per processor ($876 with SA) and $15 per month. Some of the notable features in SQL Server 2008 R2 Web Edition include:

  • Support for 32-bit and 64-bit processors
  • Support for up to four physical CPUs
  • Support for up to 64GB of RAM
  • Support for 16 instances
  • Database size 524PB
  • SSRS

Operating Systems Supported by x64 Edition

Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Datacenter without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Enterprise without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Standard without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 R2 x64 for Windows Essential Server Solutions

Operating Systems Supported by x86 Edition

Windows Server 2003 SP2 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Standard
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Small Business Server R2 Premium
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Standard
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Datacenter without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Enterprise without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Standard Server
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Standard Server without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Web
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Datacenter without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Enterprise without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Standard without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Web
Windows 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 R2 x64 for Windows Essential Server Solutions
Windows 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Foundation Server

SQL Server 2008 R2 Workgroup

SQL Server 2008 R2 Workgroup is designed to provide a relational database for departments and branch offices. SQL Server 2008 R2 Workgroup is priced at $3,743 ($936 with SA) or $730 ($182 with SA) per server, including five CALs. The main features of SQL Server 2008 R2 Workgroup are:

  • Support for 32-bit and 64-bit processors
  • Support for up to two physical CPUs
  • Support for up to 4GB of RAM on 64-bit, OS max on 32-bit
  • Database size 524PB
  • Support for 16 instances
  • SSRS

Operating Systems Supported by x64 Edition

Windows XP SP2 x64 Professional
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Vista SP2 Ultimate x64
Windows Vista SP2 Enterprise x64
Windows Vista SP2 Business x64
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 R2 x64 for Windows Essential Server Solutions
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Foundation Server
Windows 7 x64 Ultimate
Windows 7 x64 Enterprise
Windows 7 x64 Professional
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Foundation Server

Operating Systems Supported by x86 Edition

Windows XP Professional SP3
Windows XP SP3 Tablet
Windows XP Professional SP2 64-bit x64
Windows XP SP3 Media Center 2002
Windows XP SP3 Media Center 2004
Windows XP SP3 Media Center 2005
Windows XP Professional SP3 Reduced Media
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Small Business Server R2 Premium
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Standard
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Small Business Server Premium
Windows Server 2003 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Standard
Windows Server 2003 R2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Vista SP2 Ultimate
Windows Vista SP2 Enterprise
Windows Vista SP2 Business
Windows Vista SP2 64-bit x64 Ultimate
Windows Vista SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Vista SP2 64-bit x64 Business
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Datacenter without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Enterprise without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Standard without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Web
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Foundation Server
Windows 7 Ultimate
Windows 7 Enterprise
Windows 7 Professional
Windows 7 64-bit x64 Ultimate
Windows 7 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows 7 64-bit x64 Professional
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 R2 x64 for Windows Essential Server Solutions
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit Foundation Server

SQL Server 2008 R2 Express

SQL Server 2008 R2 Express is the low-end of the SQL Server family. SQL Server 2008 R2 Express shares the same code base as the other editions of SQL Server 2008 and is able to support small-scale multiuser databases. SQL Server 2008 R2 Express is a free download and is often used as the built-in database for other Microsoft applications, such as SharePoint and the System Center family of products. Some of the important characteristics of SQL Server 2008 R2 Express include:

  • Support for 32-bit and 64-bit processors
  • Support for one physical CPU
  • Support for up to 1GB of RAM
  • Maximum database size of 10GB
  • Support for 16 instances
  • No SQL Server Management Studio Basic
  • No support for SSRS
  • No support for SQL Server Agent

Operating Systems Supported by x64 Edition

Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Vista SP2 Ultimate x64
Windows Vista SP2 Home Premium x64
Windows Vista SP2 Home Basic x64
Windows Vista SP2 Enterprise x64
Windows Vista SP2 Business x64
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Foundation Server
Windows 7 x64 Ultimate
Windows 7 x64 Home Premium
Windows 7 x64 Home Basic
Windows 7 x64 Enterprise
Windows 7 x64 Professional
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 R2 x64 for Windows Essential Server Solutions
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Foundation Server

Operating Systems Supported by x86 Edition

Windows XP SP3 Home
Windows XP SP3 Professional
Windows XP SP3 Tablet
Windows XP SP3 Media Center 2002
Windows XP SP3 Media Center 2004
Windows XP SP3 Media Center 2005
Windows XP Professional SP3 Reduced Media
Windows XP Home Edition SP3 Reduced Media
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Standard
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Web Edition
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Small Business Server R2 Premium
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Standard
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Web Edition
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Vista SP2 Ultimate
Windows Vista SP2 Home Premium
Windows Vista SP2 Home Basic
Windows Vista SP2 Enterprise
Windows Vista SP2 Business
Windows Vista SP2 Ultimate 64-bit x64
Windows Vista SP2 Home Premium 64-bit x64
Windows Vista SP2 Home Basic 64-bit x64
Windows Vista SP2 Enterprise 64-bit x64
Windows Vista SP2 Business 64-bit x64
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Datacenter without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Enterprise without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Standard Server
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Standard Server without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Web Edition
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Web Edition
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Foundation Server
Windows XP Embedded SP3 Feature Pack 2007
Windows Embedded for Point of Service SP3
Windows 7 Ultimate
Windows 7 Home Premium
Windows 7 Home Basic
Windows 7 Enterprise
Windows 7 Professional
Windows 7 x64 Ultimate
Windows 7 x64 Home Premium
Windows 7 x64 Home Basic
Windows 7 x64 Enterprise
Windows 7 x64 Professional
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 R2 x64 for Windows Essential Server Solutions
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Foundation Server

SQL Server 2008 R2 Express with Advanced Services

SQL Server 2008 R2 Express with Advanced Services has the same features as SQL Server 2008 R2 Express, with the addition of SQL Server Management Studio Basic and support for SSRS. The SSRS included with SQL Server Express with Advanced Services is limited to reporting on the local database. Like regular SQL Server 2008 R2 Express, SQL Server 2008 R2 Express with Advanced Services is a free download. Some of the features in the SQL Server 2008 R2 Express with Advanced Services include:

  • Support for 32-bit and 64-bit processors
  • Support for one physical CPU
  • Support for up to 1GB of RAM (4GB for SSRS)
  • Maximum database size of 10GB
  • Support for 16 instances
  • Includes SQL Server Management Studio Basic
  • SSRS
  • Report Designer

Operating Systems Supported by x64 Edition

Windows Server 2003 x64
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Vista SP2 Ultimate x64
Windows Vista SP2 Home Premium x64
Windows Vista SP2 Home Basic x64
Windows Vista SP2 Enterprise x64
Windows Vista SP2 Business x64
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Foundation Server
Windows 7 x64 Ultimate
Windows 7 x64 Home Premium
Windows 7 x64 Home Basic
Windows 7 x64 Enterprise
Windows 7 x64 Professional
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 R2 x64 for Windows Essential Server Solutions
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Foundation Server

Operating Systems Supported by x86 Edition

Windows XP SP3 Home
Windows XP SP3 Professional
Windows XP SP3 Tablet
Windows XP SP3 Media Center 2002
Windows XP SP3 Media Center 2004
Windows XP SP3 Media Center 2005
Windows XP Professional SP3 Reduced Media
Windows XP Home Edition SP3 Reduced Media
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Standard
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Web Edition
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2003 SP2 Small Business Server R2 Premium
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Standard
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 Web Edition
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Vista SP2 Ultimate
Windows Vista SP2 Home Premium
Windows Vista SP2 Home Basic
Windows Vista SP2 Enterprise
Windows Vista SP2 Business
Windows Vista SP2 Ultimate 64-bit x64
Windows Vista SP2 Home Premium 64-bit x64
Windows Vista SP2 Home Basic 64-bit x64
Windows Vista SP2 Enterprise 64-bit x64
Windows Vista SP2 Business 64-bit x64
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Datacenter without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Enterprise without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Standard Server
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Standard Server without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 Web Edition
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Datacenter without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Enterprise without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Standard without Hyper-V
Windows Server 2008 SP2 64-bit x64 Web Edition
Windows Server 2008 SP2 x64 Foundation Server
Windows XP Embedded SP3 Feature Pack 2007
Windows Embedded for Point of Service SP3
Windows 7 Ultimate
Windows 7 Home Premium
Windows 7 Home Basic
Windows 7 Enterprise
Windows 7 Professional
Windows 7 x64 Ultimate
Windows 7 x64 Home Premium
Windows 7 x64 Home Basic
Windows 7 x64 Enterprise
Windows 7 x64 Professional
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Datacenter
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Enterprise
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Standard
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Web
Windows Server 2008 R2 x64 for Windows Essential Server Solutions
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit x64 Foundation Server

Other Editions

In addition to the primary editions of SQL Server 2008 R2, there are also a couple of other specialized editions: SQL Server 2008 R2 Developer and SQL Server 2008 R2 Express with Tools.

The SQL Server 2008 R2 Developer edition includes all the features and requirements of SQL Server 2008 R2 Datacenter. However, the SQL Server 2008 R2 Developer edition is licensed for use as a development and test system, not as a production server. It's licensed at $49.95 per developer.

SQL Server 2008 R2 Express with Tools is essentially the same as the SQL Server 2008 R2 Express edition. It has the same requirements and operating system support. The only real difference is that is also provides SQL Server Management Studio Express, to let you manage the SQL Server Express instance and databases.

Virtualization Requirements

SQL Server 2008 R2 is supported in virtual machines that run under Microsoft Hyper-V virtualization. In addition, SQL Server 2008 R2 is also supported by Microsoft for all virtualization environments that meet the requirements in Microsoft's Server Virtualization Validation Program (SVVP). Notably, this includes VMware vSphere. Some of the vendors participating in the SVVP are:

  • CA
  • Cisco
  • Citrix Systems
  • Hitachi
  • Novell
  • Oracle
  • Parallels Software
  • Red Hat
  • Riverbed Technology
  • Sun Microsystems
  • Unisys
  • Virtual Iron Software
  • VMware

For more information about Microsoft's SVVP, see the Windows Server Catalog.

Here are some things to consider in deciding if SQL Server 2008 R2 is for you!