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What is SQL Server?

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Old 04-08-2011, 12:39 PM   #1
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(TLDR = In brief what is Microsoft SQL Server and what is it used for?)


I'm no technophobe - I'm pretty computer savvy, especially when it comes to all things microsoft. But one thing has continued to befuddle me recently, and this is Microsoft SQL Server.

First, on my home PC (Windows 7 Pro), Windows Update continually tried and failed to install a 300mb update for SQL server, a program I'd never heard of. So I looked in add/remove programs to see if I could repair the previous installation and found roughly 15 entries related to SQL Server, none of which would either uninstall or repair. Eventually I used Revo Uninstaller to uninstall all of 'em, with no adverse effects to date.

Now, at work (Windows XP), a colleague has been experiencing problems with recurring prompts to install SQL server updates. It's not enough of a problem to call tech-support for, but it is a pain. Meanwhile on my machine, I noticed that sqlservr.exe is by far the most memory-intensive process, using 330mb. I do fairly intensive work on my old machine - mass data processing, not just outlook and word - so any extra fat I can trim potentially helps me go home earlier each day :)

Anyway - sorry for the aggressive title of this post, hehe, but if someone could explain what SQL server is and what it's used for, it would greatly help to satiate my curiousity. Why do I find it on my home PC, and was it safe to remove it thereof? Also, what might its purpose be on a networked office PC, and would it be safe at all to disable the messages that are popping up? I know it has something to do with databases, but alas, that's it :P

Thank you very much in advance! :)
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Old 04-08-2011, 12:42 PM   #2
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Microsoft SQL Server - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2 | Database Management System

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Old 04-08-2011, 01:03 PM   #3
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Welcome - SQL Database Reference Material - Learn sql, read an sql manual, follow an sql tutorial, or learn how to structure an SQL query!
What is SQL? - A Word Definition From the Webopedia Computer Dictionary
SQL Tutorial
JCC Consulting, Inc. Services Page
A Gentle Introduction to SQL

Those are links you should look at. However, the best link would definitely be this one:

Let me google that for you

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Old 04-08-2011, 02:54 PM   #4
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Thanks for your help, these links are helpful. I guess you probably found them with google, so in that way you're doing something that I could have done myself. But, of course I have googled the topic, it was just in terms I couldn't understand.

Originally Posted by Wikipedia
Microsoft SQL Server is a relational model database server produced by Microsoft. Its primary query languages are T-SQL and ANSI SQL.
Originally Posted by Microsoft Product Overview
Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2 is a complete set of enterprise-ready technologies and tools that help people derive the most value from information at the lowest total-cost-of-ownership. Enjoy high levels of performance, availability, and security; employ more productive management and development tools; and deliver pervasive insight with self-service business intelligence (BI).

- Complete information platform for applications of all sizes.
- Managed, familiar self-service BI tools.
- Support for large-scale data centers and data warehouses.
- Opportunities to build and extend applications in the cloud.
- Integration with the Microsoft Application Platform.
This honestly just doesn't help me a whole lot

Anyway, thanks for your help!!
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Old 04-08-2011, 07:30 PM   #5
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I'm guessing your computer was built as a webserver. For a PC you don't need SQL server. I'd try to find it and just uninstall it.
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Old 04-12-2011, 12:41 AM   #6
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A little bit late I know. However, some programs do install and require SQL Server. Microsoft Office Outlook Business Contact Manager will install SQL Server 2005 Express Edition, and the list goes on, but not for very long.

Since it has turned up on your computer, there will be a program somewhere which won't be very happy!

Also, SQL Server is notorious. SQL Service Packs NEVER install successfully without assistance, it seems to me.

It all depends on what error code you have received. I would hazard a guess at the notorious D59. It isn't the most common error, but I just have a hunch that it might be (and this isn't quite just guesswork)

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