SQL has perhaps more separate flavours than any other Microsoft product (save Office) and this certainly has the potential to confuse people, both end users and sales people. To help with this, I thought I’d do a quick post highlighting the different editions and the differences between them. To be honest, this isn’t much more than reposting what’s on the Microsoft site but often it’s finding the info on their site that’s the hard part :-)
The main differences between the different version are the number of CPU’s they can work with and how much RAM they can address, this ranges from 1 to 256 and 1GB to 2TB. There are of course other differences and more in-depth info can be found via the links below.
The different editions are:
SQL Standard: SQL Server 2008 Standard is a data management and business intelligence platform that provides best-in-class ease of use and manageability for running departmental applications. More info.
SQL Enterprise: SQL Server 2008 Enterprise is a comprehensive data platform that meets the high demands of enterprise online transaction processing and data warehousing applications. More info.
SQL Workgroup: Run branch locations on this reliable data management and reporting platform that provides secure remote synchronization and management capabilities. More info.
SQL Web: Offer low-cost, large scale highly available web applications or data hosting solutions with a highly available Internet facing web serving environments. More Info.
SQL Developer: A low cost edition of SQL Server 2008 Enterprise licensed per developer for development, testing, and demonstration purposes only. Not for production use. More info.
Most people in corporate situations find themselves having to choose between SQL Std and SQL Enterprise so here is a detailed comparison pdf.SQL2008_Std_vs_Ent
Trials and more for the above editions can be found here.
There are also two free versions of SQL available:
SQL Compact Edition 3.5: Available as a free download, SQL Server Compact enables developers to embed SQL Server directly into their applications, enabling occasionally connected and stand-alone applications for mobile devices, desktops, and Web clients across all Microsoft Windows platforms. Download here. More info.