For development and testing i usually install the standalone version of SharePoint 2010.
I start with installing win2008R2, then i install sql2008r2, then i install the SharePoint pre-requisites, and when i start installing SharePoint i always realize, i don’t have the option to use the installed sql server. Standalone ALWAYS installs sql express and uses this as the database server.
So i end up with 2 sql instllations.
an alternative is to install a farm, based on local accounts, but that’s not always what i want.
For those who want that, take a look at this article : http://sharepoint.microsoft.com/blogs/fromthefield/Lists/Posts/Post.aspx?ID=112
So, when i wanted to setup a development environment again i wanted to start with SQL installation. However, this time i remembered i don’t need it.
But what if i still want to use it instead of the express version.
that’s when an idea popped up. What would happen if i installed sql as an instance with the name …….. SHAREPOINT.
The same instance name that SharePoint uses for the express installation.
I installed sql2008R2 as an instance with the name SHAREPOINT and then installed SharePoint.
And guess what …. it used the SHAREPOINT instance i created as database for the SharePoint installation.
Voila. SharePoint standalone installation on the full SQL version.