This is a bit of a “Did you know?” post but I was unaware of this and figured there would be other people who could use this little tip. I was recently working on a project where I needed to write a search feature. I decided to go with SQL Server’s brilliant built-in Full-text search. However, I realised that it is not available with the SQL Server Express edition that ships with Visual Studio 2008. That’s when I found this little gem.
Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Express Edition with Advanced Services ships with Full-text and replication support built-in. This is great because this means that you won’t have to waste processor cycles on SQL Server Enterprise while testing code that uses these features. This edition is available here:
There is one caveat though. It looks like you need to uninstall the plain vanilla SQL Server Express before you can install this one. The installation of SQL Native Client seems to run into issues if one tries to set up both editions on the same box at the same time.