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Sneak Peak at Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Deployment


For cloud dudes, listen to this: Microsoft SQL Server 2012 is claimed to be the first cloud-equipped information and database engine. This new generation power-packed database platform will empower companies with intelligent tools necessary to securely manipulate their data. This big-data aware database software will enable and serve a broad range of computing spectrum from various devices, heterogeneous data sources, cell phones and business computers to varying sizes of private and public clouds.

SQL Server 2012 RTM is out. Various articles are available on Microsoft Technet and other blogs that talk about what is new in this edition of SQL Server. The thing that impressed me the most is that it has a connector to Hadoop Distributed File System (HDFS), my MS Thesis research area.

We just can’t avoid interaction with databases during most of the projects, can we? Hence, let us begin by going through the SQL Server 2012 installation process.

We will start by evaluating the minimum system requirements to deploy SQL Server 2012. Fire up your favorite browser and go to the following link:

Figure 1: Guide to Install an SQL Server 2012

Click on the “Planning a SQL Server Installation” link and view the “Hardware and Software Requirements for Installing SQL Server 2012”

Figure 2: Planning a SQL Server Installation

Hardware and Software Requirements to Install an SQL Server 2012:

Let us go over some of the important requirements to install SQL Server 2012:

Information Source:

  1. NTFS HDD (Recommended)
  2. Installation over Mapped, Compressed or Read-Only HDD will be blocked.
  3. An update is required for Windows Vista SP2 and Windows Server 2008 SP2. Since I will be deploying SQL Server 2012 on a W2K8R2 SP1 OS, this update is already included and I don’t need it.
  4. Don’t Install/Launch the SQL Server 2012 setup via Terminal Services client or else it will fail.
  5. .Net Framework 3.5 SP1 is needed for installation, so make sure that you add this feature via Server Manager or PS before launching the SQL Server 2012 setup. .NET Framework 4.0, SQL Server Native Client, and SQL Server Setup Support Files will be installed by SQL Server 2012 installer.
  6. Windows PowerShell 2.0: You need Windows PowerShell 2.0 installed before you initiate the SQL Server 2012 setup because it is an installation pre-requisite of Database Engine component and SSMS.
  7. Shared memory and VIA are not supported on failover clusters.
  8. Virtualization and OS: SQL Server 2012 is supported in virtual machine environments running on Hyper-V role of the Windows Server 2008 R2 Standard/Enterprise/Datacenter operating systems.
  9. Recommendation: Shut down SQL Server 2012 before shutting down the VM.
  10. Minimum required free HDD space: Minimum 6GB; but you may need more depending upon what you install. From my experience, please note here that if you select all the SQL Server features during the installation wizard, you still will require approximately 8GB of free space to install SQL Server 2012.
  11. Processor: 2GHz or faster is recommended.
  12. RAM: 1GB minimum but 4GB or more is recommended.

Since, I will be doing this installation in a lab environment, 1GB RAM will suffice.


I have already downloaded SQL Server 2012 Enterprise Edition. I have a Hyper-V lab environment and a VM ready to host this really exciting product. My VM has Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 Datacenter edition installed, so OS is not a worry. I have setup my VM to meet the minimum hardware requirements listed in the requirements section above. So, let us fulfill the following software requirements:

  1. Windows PowerShell 2.0
  2. .NET Framework 3.5 SP1

Fire up your Windows Powershell and type the following and hit enter:

get-host|Select-Object version

Figure 3: Find out Windows Powershell Version

OK. I am fine with the first requirement. Let us see if we meet the second requirement, the “.NET Framework 3.5 SP1”:

Go to Server Manager > Features

Figure 4: I need to install .NET Framework 3.5 SP1

Hmm, I need to install the .NET Framework 3.5 SP1. Let’s click on Add Features icon and select the .NET Framework 3.5.1: (Note that .NET Framework 3.5.1 = .NET Framework 3.5 SP1)

Figure 5: Click at .NET Framework 3.5.1 Features

Once you click on .NET Framework 3.5.1 Features, a new pop-up window will show up. Click at Add Required Role Services in Figure 6:

Figure 6: Click at Add Required Role Services

Hit Next three times…

Figure 7: Click Next and Next and Next

Click Install in Figure 8:

Figure 8: Click Install

Click Close in Figure 9:

Figure 9: Click Close.

Great then. We have passed all the per-requisites to kick start our SQL Server 2012 deployment. The .NET Framework 3.5 SP1 is installed as well:

Figure 10: .NET Framework 3.5 SP1 installed

Let us insert our SQL Server 2012 Installation Media Kit in the DVD ROM. I just loaded the .ISO image in my Hyper-V, avoiding the need for a physical DVD:

Figure 11: Click Run SETUP.EXE

Click Run Setup.EXE, in order to launch the familiar SQL Server installation center:

Figure 12: Click at Installation

Go to Installation section and then select the New SQL Server Stand-alone installation

Figure 13: Select New SQL Server stand-alone or add features to an existing installation

A familiar Setup Support Rules check will follow which will check whether the account you are using has administrator privileges, whether a computer restart is pending etc…

Figure 14: Setup Support Rules

Make sure that this check is successful and that you do not see any failures in the next screen… Click OK in Figure 15:

Figure 15: Setup Support Files Check Successful > Click Next

Enter your SQL Server 2012 product key and click Next

Figure 16: Enter SQL Server 2012 Product Key

Accept the license terms and click Next

Figure 17: Accept EULA

A scan for product updates and installation of setup files to your system will take place next…Once complete, click Next

Figure 18: Setup Files Installation

Once again a setup support files check will take place and you must rectify any failures, if any, in the next screen before you can continue

Figure 19: Setup Support Files Check

Once you are setup support files check is complete without failures, click Next

Figure 20: Setup Support Files Checks Successful

Select SQL Server Feature Installation option in Figure 21 and hit Next

Figure 21: Select the SQL Server Feature Installation Option

Select the SQL Server 2012 Instance and shared features that may interest you in Figure 22. Specify the shared feature directory and hit Next

Figure 22: Select the Features You Like To Install

Installation Rules check will run next. Make sure that the status on these rules check is passed. Click Next

Figure 23: Pr-Requisites Check

In the Instance Configuration window, specify the Instance ID and Instance root directory information. For this lab, I kept the default instance name. Click Next:

Figure 24: Identify Instance Name

Disk Space Requirements will be shown next. Depending on your features selection in Figure 22, these disk space requirements may vary. Notice that I selected every available feature in Figure 22 and thus the disk space requirements are 7820MB (less than 8GB). Click Next

Figure 25: Disk Space Requirements

In the next window, you should specify the account name for the various SQL Server 2012 services. You should follow the best practice and recommendation by Microsoft to use a separate service for each SQL Server service. Note that this user account can be a local computer account or an Active Directory account.

Use the Collation tab to specify non-default collations for the Database Engine and Analysis Services. For more information, click here.

After you have specified the service account names, hit Next

Figure 26: Service Accounts Selection

Database Engine Configuration screen will require you to specify the authentication mode and administrator user account(s) for the Database Engine. Note that if you select Mixed Mode Authentication, you must provide a strong password for the built-in SQL Server system administrator account:

Figure 27: SQL Server Database Engine Authentication Mode Selection

I added the local server administrator account and Windows Authentication Mode for this lab setup. Refer the documentation of your application that will be using SQL Server 2012 in order to identify whether you should specify Windows Authentication only or Mixed Mode Authentication.

P.S.: If you specify non-default installation directories, ensure that the installation folders are unique to this instance of SQL Server. None of the directories in this dialog box should be shared with directories from other instances of SQL Server.

You can use the FILESTREAM tab to enable FILESTREAM for your instance of SQL Server. For more information about FILESTREAM, click here. Click Next

Figure 28: Add the current user

Specify the Server Mode on the Analysis Service Configuration page. Analysis Services provides online analytical processing (OLAP) and data mining functionality for business intelligence applications. In this release, support for OLAP databases and data mining models is available when you install Analysis Services in Multidimensional mode. Identify any analysis services requirements you may have and select the option in Figure 29 accordingly. Also, add the users who should have administrative permissions for analysis services and hit Next

Figure 29: Analysis Service Server Mode and Administrative Permissions Selection

I kept the defaults in the Reporting Services Configuration on the next page. Click Next

Figure 30: Reporting Services Install and configure

The Microsoft SQL Server Distributed Replay feature helps you assess the impact of future SQL Server upgrades. You can also use it to help assess the impact of hardware and operating system upgrades, and SQL Server tuning. For details about this service, click here. Specify the user accounts for Distributed Replay Controller service and access permissions. Click Next

Figure 31: Distributed Replay Controller Service Access Permissions

Use the Distributed Replay Client page to specify the users you want to grant administrative permissions to for the Distributed Replay client service. Controller Name is an optional parameter. Enter the name of the controller if you have already created a controller that the client computer will communicate with for the Distributed Replay client service. Else you can leave it empty for now but you must manually enter the controller name in the client configuration file later. Specify the working and result directories and hit Next…

Figure 32: Distributed Replay Client Controller and Directories

In the Error Reporting page, click Next

Figure 33: Error Reporting

Another installation configuration rules check will follow. In case any of these checks fail below, your installation process will be blocked. Make sure that none of them fail. Once successful, click Next

Figure 34: Installation Configurations Check

On the Ready to Install page, review and verify the features and configurations you selected. Once satisfied, click Install

Figure 35: Ready to Install – Review Your Selection

Wait for the installation to complete…

Figure 36: Wait for the Installation to Finish

Click OK on the next pop up window. The windows says that you must restart your computer after the installation process is complete.

Figure 37: Installation Complete. Click OK

Verify in Figure 38 that all the features were successfully installed. Click Close.

Figure 38: Review Status of All Installed Features. Click Close

Restart your computer…

Figure 39: Restart the computer

After restart, let us fire up our SQL Server 2012 Management Studio. Go to Start > Microsoft SQL Server 2012 > SQL Server Management Studio

Figure 40: After Restart Go to SQL Server 2012 SSMS

SQL Server 2012 Management Studio splash screen shows up…

Figure 41: SSMS Splash Screen

Specify the Server Type, Server Name and Authentication… Click Connect

Figure 42: Provide SQL Server 2012 Database Engine Server Name and Authentication Info

Congratulations! Your cloud-equipped database and information platform is ready to use!

Figure 43: SQL Server 2012 Installed and Operational


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