Available with Standard or Advanced license.
Within ArcGIS software, the term database servers refers to instances of Microsoft SQL Server Express that have been enabled to store desktop or workgroup geodatabases.
You create geodatabases and perform other administrative tasks for database servers through the Database Servers node in the Catalog window or ArcCatalog. Performing the administration of the database server and its geodatabases through ArcGIS for Desktop means there is no extra software or database administration expertise required for you to create and use these types of geodatabases.
Connections to the geodatabases on a database server require a SQL Server database client to connect from an ArcGIS client. In this case, the client applications are ArcGIS for Desktop at the Standard or Advanced license level, ArcGIS Engine, and ArcGIS for Server Workgroup. The downloads for these ArcGIS client products include installation files for SQL Server Express.
With ArcGIS for Desktop (Standard and Advanced) and ArcGIS Engine with the Geodatabase Update extension, you can set up a database server and create geodatabases that can be accessed by a few users and edited by one user at a time.
With ArcGIS for Server Workgroup, you can set up a database server and create geodatabases from within ArcGIS for Desktop that can be accessed by up to 10 users at a time, all of whom can be editing concurrently. When using the database servers licensed through ArcGIS for Server Workgroup, you can also connect to the geodatabases using web applications, for which there is no connection limit.
The following table presents a summary of functionality available in geodatabases created on database servers:
Type of client-to-database connection
Through ArcGIS for Desktop or ArcObjects
Backup/Recovery model used
User able to alter geodatabase configuration
Type of user/group logins
Operating system (Windows) authenticated
Uses same code page as the server
XML column support
Versioned editing support
Support for user-defined views
Support for SQL Server spatial types
Support for ST_Raster storage type