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Learn, Develop, and Power Your Applications with SQL Server 2016 Express


How to Download and Install SQL Server 2016 Express Edition




SQL Server 2016 Express Edition is a free, feature-rich, and lightweight version of Microsoft's popular relational database management system (RDBMS). It is ideal for learning, developing, and deploying data-driven applications for desktop, web, and small server environments. In this article, we will show you how to download and install SQL Server 2016 Express Edition on your Windows machine.


What is SQL Server 2016 Express Edition?




SQL Server 2016 Express Edition is one of the editions of SQL Server 2016, which also include Enterprise, Standard, Web, and Developer editions. SQL Server 2016 Express Edition has the following characteristics:




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  • It is free to download, use, and distribute.



  • It supports up to 10 GB of data per database.



  • It supports up to 1 GB of memory and 1 CPU socket per instance.



  • It includes all the core database engine features, such as transactions, backup and restore, security, encryption, and data compression.



  • It also includes some advanced features, such as Query Store, Temporal Tables, JSON support, PolyBase query engine, Stretch Database, Always Encrypted, Dynamic Data Masking, Row Level Security, and In-Memory OLTP.



  • It supports common development tools for on-premises and cloud applications.



Benefits of SQL Server 2016 Express Edition




Some of the benefits of using SQL Server 2016 Express Edition are:


  • It is free and easy to install and use.



  • It provides a rich and reliable data store for lightweight web sites and desktop applications.



  • It allows you to learn and practice SQL Server features and skills without any cost or license restrictions.



  • It enables you to develop and test applications that can be easily upgraded to other SQL Server editions if needed.



  • It offers high performance, security, scalability, and manageability capabilities for small-scale data-driven applications.



Limitations of SQL Server 2016 Express Edition




Some of the limitations of using SQL Server 2016 Express Edition are:


  • It has a database size limit of 10 GB per database.



  • It has a memory limit of 1 GB per instance.



  • It has a CPU socket limit of 1 per instance.



  • It does not include some features that are available in other SQL Server editions, such as Analysis Services, Reporting Services, Integration Services, Master Data Services, Data Quality Services, Power Pivot for SharePoint, Data Mining, Business Intelligence clients, Spatial and location services, and Additional database services.



  • It does not support some scenarios that require high availability or scalability features, such as Always On Availability Groups or Failover Clustering.



How to Download SQL Server 2016 Express Edition




You can download SQL Server 2016 Express Edition from different sources depending on your preferences and needs. Here are some options:


Download from Microsoft website




The easiest way to download SQL Server 2016 Express Edition is from the official Microsoft website. You can find the download link here: Microsoft SQL Server 2016 Service Pack 2 Express. You can choose between different languages and file formats. The file size is about 5.7 GB. You will need to accept the license terms and conditions before downloading the file. You will also need to provide some basic information, such as your name, email, and country.


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Download from other sources




If you prefer to download SQL Server 2016 Express Edition from other sources, you can also find some alternative links on the internet. However, you should be careful and make sure that the source is trustworthy and the file is not corrupted or infected with malware. Some of the possible sources are:


  • SQL Server 2016 Express Edition (64-bit) Download for Windows 10, 8, 7: This is a third-party website that provides a direct download link for the SQL Server 2016 Express Edition (64-bit) file. The file size is about 5.7 GB. You will need to click on the "Download Now" button and wait for the download to start.



  • SQL Server 2016 Express Edition (32-bit) Download for Windows 10, 8, 7: This is another third-party website that provides a direct download link for the SQL Server 2016 Express Edition (32-bit) file. The file size is about 4.2 GB. You will need to click on the "Download Now" button and wait for the download to start.