Facts about how SQL Server 2008 setup works…

In order to install, upgrade, uninstall, and patch the sql server 2008 instance on the system we need to call the setup.exe from the installation media.

The setup.exe is an unmanaged code which checks the basic pre-requisites to launch the actual Setup process.  The basic pre-requisite checks performed by setup.exe are below,

1)       It checks for the presence of the .Net Framework with SP1. If not present, it will initiate the installation of the .Net Framework with SP1.


Note:  The setup during the installation of .Net Framework 3.5 might say “Downloading from Internet”. However it loads the setup from local copy and does not connect to Internet hence saving some valuable time.


2)       It checks for the presence of the Windows Installer 4.5 and if it is not present it will install it.

After installing these pre-requisites, it asks for a reboot. And if there is any pending reboot operation from previous installation, it will ask for reboot and exit with error code 3010.

The Logs for the setup.exe (unmanaged code) is located in %temp%sqlsetup*.log.

After the initial bootstrapping performed by setup.exe, it calls the setup100.exe which is managed code and it performs the setup process for the SQL Server 2008...

Watch out this space for more interesting facts...

Parikshit Savjani
SE, Microsoft SQL Server

Comments (5)

  1. Mark says:

    When running the SQL Server 2008 setup for the first time on an Windows XP SP3, I’m getting the exit error code: -2067723326 after it installs Windows Installer 4.5 (KB942288-v3). Upon next reboot the SQL Server 2008 installs.

  2. Varun_SQL says:

    Hi Mark,

    Thanks for the comment,

    Further to your query, one of Prerequisites to install SQL Server 2008 is Windows Installer 4.5 (Per SQL Docs: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms143219.aspx)

    Now, with Windows XP SP3, the default version of windows installer MSIEXEC.exe is "3.1" .

    Therefore, before proceeding, SQL Server installation wizard first attempts to install Windows Installer 4.5  and in process requests to restart the computer.

    So, If you are prompted to restart your computer, restart it, and then restart SQL Server 2008 setup.exe again.

    Hope this will help!


  3. subba says:

    when i tried to install mssql 2008 r2, after clicking on setup.exe its aksing do you want to run this program to allow the changed to the computer if press YES after that simply one black screen is appearing and disappearing witn the milli seconds and nothing is going forward and no error , what might be cause. The same setup is working fine on other machine

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