Reverting to SQL Server Express

Posted on 2009-12-28
Last Modified: 2012-05-08
After upgrading my machine to Windows 7 running some updates, everything seemed to be working fine. This morning I was unable to start my development SQL Server because, my 'SQL Server evaluation period has expired.' Normally, this wouldn't be a problem, since I've been using the express editions for everything -- or so I thought. Somehow my working instance was switched from SQL Server Express to SQL Server. I have no idea how this happened, but I need to fix it.

Is there any way to fix this without loosing my data?

[snippet from the error log]

2009-12-28 13:47:27.89 Server      Logging SQL Server messages in file 'C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL10.SQLEXPRESS\MSSQL\Log\ERRORLOG'.

2009-12-28 13:47:27.89 Server      Error: 17051, Severity: 16, State: 1.

2009-12-28 13:47:27.89 Server      SQL Server evaluation period has expired.

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Question by:OFGemini
    LVL 75

    Accepted Solution

    copy the mdf and ldf files to some other directory , unintsll the evaluattion version, install the Express , and attach those files as new database
    LVL 1

    Assisted Solution

    either that or create a full backup of your database, uninstall the eval version, install Express, then restore the db

    Author Comment

    This is odd ... the uninstall utility shows that it uses Express edition.
    LVL 75

    Expert Comment

    by:Aneesh Retnakaran
    do u have multiple instances running on your machine. Check the no of services witt  "SQL Server "  on  control panel->services

    Author Comment

    I've uninstalled the SQLEXPRESS instance and there are no instances of SQL Server (Express or otherwise) running. That instance was reporting as running SQL Server in some places and SQL Server Express in others. Now it will allow me to install SQL Server Express; previously it claimed it was already installed. Possibly some errant registry setting?

    Anyway I've successfully uninstalled / reinstalled everything, and attached all of the databases back again. Seems to be resolved.

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