Some software providers want to use free SQL Server Express as one part of their software product and then deploy to their customers. Personally I don’t think it is a good idea, but actually they can do like that. But we must acknowledge some limitations when using SQL Server Express as product.
We collect part of limitations of SQL Server Express 2012 as below:
1: Max Compute Capacity: 1 physical CPU with up to 4 cores
No matter how many CPUs and how many cores your computer has, your SQL Server 2012 Express can ONLY uses up to 1 physical CPU with up to 4 core for computing; If you have a multiple CPUs computer, you obviously waste money
2: Max RAM Capacity: 1 GB
No matter how many memory (RAM) your computer has, your SQL Server 2012 Express can ONLY use up to 1GB RAM, that means if you have big amount data, you might meet issue;
3: Single Database size: 10 GB
No matter how big your HDD storage size is, the single database size on SQL Server 2012 Express can NOT exceed over 10 GB, if the size is up to 10 GB, your application system will stop any database operations.
4: Database mirroring: NOT supported
SQL Server 2012 Express can not implement mirror function, this is important if customer wants a database mirror backup.
5: Backup compression: NOT supported
No way to reduce the backup file size unless you use other compress tool, but if you do like this way you should take your own risk that you might lost data;
6: Full-text and semantic search: NOT supported
For example, developer can NOT use ‘CONTAINS’ keyword.
This sample below will not work in SQL Server Express:
SELECT Name FROM NameTable WHERE FirstName = 'Tom' AND CONTAINS(LastName, 'Su')
But above sample work in other editions of SQL Server such as SQL Server Standard and SQL Server Enterprise.
7: Web services (HTTP/SOAP endpoints): NOT supported:
Other editions of SQL Server can be set as web services directly, such as in a WCF application, set Database as a SOAP endpoints directly. However, fortunately we can write our own application to implement data web services;
8: NO Data Warehouse supported;
9: NO Data Mining supported
There are other limitations please check official Microsoft website.