Is it possible to connect two sql server 2008 express into cluster?

Why we want cluster? We have SQL express DB for our software but what if DB crash or something. So we want to have backup in second server and if primary go down backup start running. Which solution is best?


  • Please describe why you think you need clustering? Mirroring is available in SQL Server since v2005, and is far cheaper to implement. But both are features that you have to pay for, same with other database vendors... – OMG Ponies Jul 3 '10 at 18:36
  • So what's the setup for your software? How many clients do you have connecting to the database? If it does crash is it a major problem if the secondary database is not completely up-to-date? – Martin Smith Jul 3 '10 at 18:56
  • it is web application. around 100+ users. Yes i know this can be big problem so i am looking the solution. What about replication? databasejournal.com/features/mssql/article.php/3814591/… – senzacionale Jul 3 '10 at 20:21

To summarise, if you have Express edition you have no High Availability options including mirroring, clustering, replication, anything.

You get what you pay for. Either your data is valuable and you pony up for Enterprise CPU licenses (it's a web app) or you reinstall/restore when the shit hits the fan...


No. From the feature list for editions only standard or enterprise edition support clustering.

(Under the High Availability Section)

  • Thx for your answer. Is any other option for express similar to cluster? – senzacionale Jul 3 '10 at 18:32
  • @senzacionale Perhaps update your question with what exactly you need it to do. – Martin Smith Jul 3 '10 at 18:34
  • But probably belongs on server fault... – Martin Smith Jul 3 '10 at 18:40

You can't set up clustering or mirroring, but you can set up a poor man's "log shipping." Whatever you're using to generate the backups of your database (Task Scheduler or some other scheduling system) could be used to copy the backup to another install of SQL Server Express and then use SQLCMD to apply the backup.

Also, keep in mind that in a clustering situation, there is still but one copy of the database. Microsoft clustering with SQL Server is a shared nothing configuration. That means the disk belongs to only one physical server at a time and the databases reside on that physical server. The reason that's important is to think about why the DB crashed. If it crashed due to corruption or the physical disk failure, you'd still be down in a clustering situation. Now, if the physical server crashed, then in a clustering situation you'd failover, meaning you'd have a 30 second to a few minute downtime.

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