Watch Out Installing Denali CTP3 from DVD to Virtual Machines

So Microsoft just publicly released CTP3 of Denali, the code name for the next (2012) version of SQL Server. But beware installing from DVD to Virtual Machines! I downloaded CTP3, burned it to a DVD, and ran the installer .exe from the DVD on a VM. The installer appears to work and then just disappears. No message. No error. No nothing. No way!!!

It turns out that this particular installer attempts to unpackage the downloaded files in place; that is, on the DVD — which it can’t of course. But it won’t complain. Nor will it prompt you for an alternative unpackage location. It’ll just appear to install and disappear. And you’ll be left scratching your head. Gotta love beta software!

The only way to make it work is to run the installer on a hard disk (either inside or outside the VM) to unpackage the download, and then install from there. For more information and a complete walkthrough for installing Denali CTP3, check out Aaron Bertrand’s post at

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