When we are assisting clients with an upgrade or new installation of Infor CRM, we are frequently asked what version of SQL should be used.
Short answer: SQL 2014 Standard Edition, on its own server
Each version of CRM has a number of versions of SQL it has been tested to work with. The current 8.3.x version of Infor CRM (8.3.6 as of this post) has been tested to work with SQL Server 2008 R2, SQL Server 2012, and SQL Server 2014. Generally speaking, it is best to use the most recent supported version if you are able, so 2014 gets the nod. If you already have an older supported version, that will also work.
When purchasing SQL, you can choose from Standard and Enterprise editions. Enterprise is more expensive than standard, and the extra features it has are not specifically needed by CRM. (It’s extra features mostly deal with scalability and reporting tools useful to large enterprises. Check with Microsoft for a full list.) There is also a free version call SQL Express, but it has limitations (such as a 10 GB limit on database size) which make it unsuitable to use in a production environment.
With very few exceptions, SQL needs to be installed on a dedicated server. SQL is designed to grab up as much memory as it can find, and not release that memory to other programs. This is good for SQL’s performance, but bad for installing other programs on the same server. While it is possible to install other programs on the same server as SQL, this almost always causes performances issues, so give SQL its own server if at all possible. The good news, however, is that a single SQL server can support multiple databases; so you only need a single dedicated SQL server, even if you have several programs using that server for databases. You can even put multiple instances of SQL on the same server, so the same SQL server that is running your SQL 2014 database can also be running the SQL 2008 database needed by some other application.