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I've setup a few SharePoint systems (both WSS 3.0 and MOSS 2007) and have always created named instances on the SQL server for the databases. But, I'm wondering if this was truly necessary. It's been so long since I setup these systems, that I don't recall why I (thought) I needed to used named instances. Are there any problems that folks know can occur if you don't use named instances for your SharePoint databases?

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Remember, that all instances of SQL Server have a name. If you don't specify one then it is MSSQLSERVER.

There is no issue with using a non-named instance of SQL Server. It defaults to named instance because it reduces the probability of the Express/MSDE SQL instance conflicting with other instances of SQL Server. It's not uncommon for there to be 3-4 instances of SQL Server on a production DB server. One could be embedded, Express and multiple instances of Standard/Enterprise.

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+1 to Nissan for his response. In addition, I'd highly recommend the use of SQL aliases if you aren't already using them. They buy you a certain degree of portability/abstraction (between SQL and the SharePoint environment) and are invaluable in the event that you should have to (a) recover from catastrophic SQL failure, or (b) relocate your farm to another database environment. –  Sean McDonough Oct 6 '09 at 21:20
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There's no problem with Sharepoint being in a named instance instead of a default instance.

If you have multiple instances just beware that you are spending more CPU and RAM managing those instances.

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