Microsoft SQL Server 2016 Express Edition Add Full Text Search to an Existing Instance of SQL Server Express 2016

You can optionally add full text searching to an existing instance of SQL Express 2016. Full text searching allows the searching of embedded entity and relationship documents.

System Requirements

Supported Operating System

Windows 10, Windows 8, Windows Server 2016, Windows Server 2019

  • Processor
    • Intel - Compatible processor with a minimum speed of 1 GHz or a faster processor.
  • RAM
    • Minimum 512MB
  • Hard Disk Space
    • 4.2 GB of Disk Space

Limitation: Microsoft SQL Server Express supports 1 physical processor, 1 GB memory and 10 GB storage.


Use the following steps to add full text searching to your existing instance of SQL Express.

  1. Exit Sentinel Visualiser, if the program is running.

  2. If you have not downloaded SQL Server Express 2016, execute the download below.

  3. Select 'New SQL Server stand-alone installation or add features to an existing installation'. Add features to an existing installation

  4. Wait for the next screen to launch. Microsoft SQL Server 2016 Setup

  5. Select [License Terms], check the box next to 'I accept the license terms and Privacy Statement' and click [Next]. Microsoft SQL Server 2016 License Terms

  6. Select 'Add features to an exisiting instance of SQL Server 2016' and use SENT4EXPRESS as the instance. Click [Next]. Microsoft SQL Server 2016 Instance

  7. Under 'Instance Features', select 'Full-Text and Semantic Extractions for Search'. Click [Next]. Full-Text and Semantic Extractions for Search

  8. Accept the default settings for Server Configuration. Click [Next]. Server Configuration

  9. When the installation has been successfully completed, click the [Close] button. Install Complete

  10. The following message may appear when the installation is complete. If you receive this message restart your computer before using Sentinel Visualizer. Otherwise, you can begin using Sentinel Visualizer. Microsoft SQL Server 2016 Restart

  11. Install SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS).

  12. Install the Microsoft Office 2010 Filter Packs, named 'FilterPack64bit.exe'.

  13. Install the PDF iFilter 64.

  14. Open SQL Server Management Studio. SQL Server Management Studio

  15. Select [New Query] from the toolbar.SQL Server Management Studio New Query

  16. Copy the Query below, by clicking the [Copy Text] button.

    EXEC sp_fulltext_service 'update_languages'; 
    EXEC sp_fulltext_service 'load_os_resources', 1;
    EXEC sp_fulltext_service 'restart_all_fdhosts';

  17. Select the database to run the query against, paste the Query into the query window. Click the [Execute] button. SQL Server Management Studio Execute Query

  18. Verify the installation was configured properly.

  19. Copy the next Query below, by clicking the [Copy Text] button.

    SELECT document_type
    FROM sys.fulltext_document_types
    WHERE document_type = '.docx' OR document_type = '.pdf'

  20. Paste the Query into the query window. Click the [Execute] button. SQL Server Management Studio Execute Query

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