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Enabling the TCP/IP protocol in the SQL Server Configuration Utility to Configure SQL Server Express 2005 for Remote Access

On the IP Addresses tab you will probably see several sections - one for each network connection. In the example below there is only one network card (listed in the first section) and a local loopback connection indicated by the standard address of For remote access to the SQL Server Express 2005 instance the loopback connection is of no interest.

The first section is where the configuration has to be correct. Active option should say Yes as should the Enabled option. The IP address will probably be filled in for you (by Windows) and will be different on your machine.

If you wish to enable dynamic ports for your SQL Server Express 2005 instance then the TCP Dynamic Ports option should be 0. To disable this option and use a fixed port change this field to a blank value and fill in the port on the TCP Port option. Disabling dynamic ports is non standard for named instances and should really only be done if you know exactly what you are doing and why you want to do it.

Note: Dynamic ports means that the SQL Server Express 2005 instance gets assigned a random port every time it is started up. In order to connect, the remote client needs to know this port. It asks the Server Browser for the port number (the Server Browser has a well known and unchanging port configuration so it can always be found). The upshot is that if dynamic ports are used then the Server Browser must be started.

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