Microsoft SQL Server Express is the freely-downloadable and distributable version of Microsoft's SQL Server relational database management system. It offers a database solution specifically targeted for embedded and smaller-scale applications. Unlike its predecessor, MSDE, there is no concurrent workload governor which “limits performance if the database engine receives more work than is typical of a small number of users." It does, however, have a number of technical restrictions which make it undesirable for large-scale deployments, including:
* Maximum database size of 4 GB per database (compared to 2 GB in the former MSDE). The 4 GB limit is per database (log files excluded) and can be extended in some scenarios through the use of multiple interconnected databases.
* Hardware utilization limits:
o Single physical CPU, multiple cores
o 1 GB of RAM (runs on any size RAM system, but uses only 1 GB)
* Absence of SQL Server Agent Service
Although its predecessor, MSDE, was virtually devoid of basic GUI management tools, SQL Server Express includes several GUI tools for database management. Among these tools are:
* SQL Server Management Studio Express
* SQL Server Configuration Manager
* SQL Server Surface Area Configuration tool
* SQL Server Business Intelligence Development Studio.