SQL Server Express version is a free, lightweight, easy-to-install version, designed for people who need the basic capabilities of Microsoft SQL Server.

This guide explains how to perform the installation in the simplest manner, and divided into 2 parts:

  1. The first part deals with installing SQL Server 2014 Express
  2. The second part deals with the installation of the Northwind Database

Enter the following link and choose the Download option:

 
In the next window, depending on which operating system you have, choose one of the following options:

 
Then open the downloaded file, and choose the path to which the files will be extracted:

 
Wait for the extraction to finish

 
Then, a new window will be opened automatically, allowing you to continue the installation of SQL Server. Select the highlighted option and proceed to the next step:

 
Accept the terms of use, then click Next to proceed to the next step:

 
In this window, choose whether to use Microsoft Update, then click Next to proceed to the next step:

 
In this window, select all marked options, then click Next to proceed to the next step:

 
In this window, select the highlighted option, then click Next to proceed to the next step:

 
In this window, click Next to proceed to the next step:

 
In this window, select the second option and enter a password by which you will connect to the database. You must select a “strong” password otherwise the installation will not be possible (eg – Pa $$ w0rd). When you finish click Next to proceed to the next step:

 
In the last step, we will wait for the installation to finish:

 
If the installation went successful, you will receive the following message.

After completing this section, go to the next tab – Install Northwind Database

Open the SQL Server Management Studio, which can be easily found by the Search Box:

 
Alternatively, you can click [Windows ] + [R] and then type ssms.exe

 
Click Connect:

 
Then choose File – > Open – > File:

 
Select the highlighted file, this file can be downloaded from the following link

 
Next, click the Execute button:

 
Wait for a few seconds until the execution is completed

 
If execution went successful, you’ll receive the following message:

 
Right click the Databases folder and choose Refresh:

 
You’ll then see that Northwind Database has been added:

 
In the last step, make sure you can run queries successfully. Right-click Northwind Database and choose New Query:

 
In the new query window

  1. Type the following query : SELECT * FROM employees
  2. Press the Execute button
  3. verify that the data is indeed retrieved in the bottom pane