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*Most of the concepts and configuration lessons in this category of blog posts “SQL Server Installation - Config” also apply to SQL Server 2005 Express and Full editions (as well as SQL Server 2008 Full edition).  Also, if you have installed any version of SQL Server 2008 or 2005 on your machine already, you may be reading these lessons to look for hints regarding how to set up SQL Server for smooth integration with ASP.NET and C# database programming; if that is your situation, you will probably find value in going through the lessons to learn the configuration parameters and setup that I tweaked to make SQL Server work smoothly with ASP.NET and ADO.NET.

If you have not already done so, please read the previous lessons Preparing your computer to install SQL Server 2008 Express and How to install SQL Server 2008 Express.  Those lessons contain some important videos to watch and examine for the setup of SQL Server.  Let me recap some important configuration items to note if you are an ASP.NET (ADO.NET) developer trying to interface with SQL Server or a DBA setting up a SQL Server instance for an ASP.NET development team:

  • Setup the SQL Server service to runas the lowest possible privelege user in Windows.  I did that by creating a user account on my machine called “SQL Server Service” and then configured the SQL Server database engine to runas that account.
  • Use Mixed Mode authentication.  Setup a strong password for the “sa” account.

Now, let’s continue to the rest of the configuration that is necessary to smoothly integrate SQL Server 2008 with ASP.NET and ADO.NET development.  The next important item on the list is to setup the TCP port for SQL Server.  You have to use the SQL Server Configuration Manager program to setup port 1433 for SQL Server and then enable the protocol.  *Pay attention in the TCP/IP Properties popup window, where you specify the IPAll properties, that you enter 1433 for the TCP Port and BLANK for the TCP Dynamic Ports property (remove 0 if that is in there).  Also be sure that IP1, IP2 and IP3 are not enabled (Enabled = No).  You have to restart SQL Server to make those changes take effect.  Click here to watch a detailed video showing all the steps necessary to configure the TCP Port.  By enabling port 1433 you are making it easier for the ADO.NET driver to communicate with SQL Server since that is the default port.

The final step left in the configuration is to enable the “sa” account which is may be disabled depending on your installation.  You can use the Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio to enable the account.  If it is already enabled, you don’t need to do anything more.  Click here to watch a detailed video showing how to enable the SA account.


  1. This is a very good tutorial. It would be great if you discuss any needed changes to the Windows Firewall here, and perhaps to Norton Internet Security as well, to allow connections to the database from other computers.

    Comment by Bob Cochran — January 23, 2009 @ 8:39 pm

  2. Another suggestion: list how to test the database ports and the enabling of the ’sa’ account at this time.

    Comment by Bob Cochran — January 23, 2009 @ 8:58 pm

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