This is probably a super basic question, but if I purchase an OEM SQL Server 2016 Standard edition, how would I install it as 2014 to match the other servers? Can I get a 2014 installer and use the 2016 license key during the installation?

  • Do you mean retail license instead of OEM? Volume licenses purchased and Software Assurance do qualify for downgrade rights in most cases. – HunterX3 Mar 27 '17 at 21:05
  • Yes, retail license, it would not be through volume or SA. – thomasjbarrett Mar 28 '17 at 20:59

If you want a Sql Server 2014 instance, you'll need to install that specific version. Installing Sql Server 2016 will create a Sql Server 2016 instance, but you can control certain database behaviors to be compatible with the specified version of SQL Server by ALTERING the COMPATIBILITY_LEVEL.

  • Note that once a database has been attached to the 2016 instance it can no longer be attached to an older instance. Compatibility level affect the behaviour, not the persistence. Test to ensure you can perform all the tasks you require with this mixed configuration. – Michael Green Jul 4 '19 at 0:33

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