SQL Server 2017 Developer and Express


There are two free versions of SQL Server 2017

  • Developer Edition
  • Express Edition

However, the introduction to the two versions of Microsoft’s official SQL server download page is relatively general, so it is difficult to see which one is more suitable for my current development and testing needs.


Introduction of developer

SQL Server 2017 Developer is a full-featured free edition, licensed for use as a development and test database in a non-production environment.

The developer version is free and includes the full functionality of SQL server. But it can only be used for development and testing, not for production environment.

Introduction of Express

SQL Server 2017 Express is a free edition of SQL Server, ideal for development and production for desktop, web, and small server applications.

The express version is also free and can be used in production environments. But it can only be used for small-scale scenarios, such as desktop applications, websites, and small server applications.

The difference between developer and express

You can see the detailed difference from the official link


We can see that the developer version is almost the same as the enterprise version in terms of function, without any hardware restrictions. It’s just that developer can’t be used in a production environment.

The express version can be used in the production environment, but there are clear hardware limitations, such as

  • It can only support four CPU cores at most
  • Memory limit
  • The database file size is also limited
  • wait

Transferred from: https://www.sunzhongwei.com/diff-between-the-sql-server-2017-developer-version-and-express-edition