I am due to upgrade SQL Server 2005 Express to 2014 Express. This will be an in-place upgrade.

It's not my preferred way of upgrading, but being a physical machine and in a specific secure network zone, it has to stay put & keep its instance name, so it must be an in-place upgrade.

The only small issue is there is just under 10% free space available on the C: drive (the drive has 3GB space left). I hope to upgrade in-place and then once complete, go through getting disks replaced for bigger disks etc. (this is due to project upgrade deadlines).

Could someone tell me how much extra space will be put onto the C: drive with a SQL Server Express 2014 upgrade, please? Note no system databases live on the C: drive. Sadly no housekeeping can be performed by the Windows team etc.

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    I think there are just too many unknowns here for an accurate guess. Saying you have 10% free doesn't tell us much without knowing how big the C-drive is. I suspect you may have to resort to testing this upgrade on another computer and measuring the space utilization. – Scott Hodgin Sep 13 '18 at 10:37
  • The drive has 3GB space left :O. Yes you are right, somehow have to find another server to test on – Daniel Nash Sep 13 '18 at 10:43
  • You could also go for the low hanging fruit of cleaning out the recycle bin, deleting log files or dump files. I'd analyze the individual folders under the C-drive to see where the big-bang-for-the-buck space is. – Scott Hodgin Sep 13 '18 at 10:51
  • first try to clean disk (start from default windows tools + search for big files), very often - it a lot of waisted space used by temp and other unnecessary files, in worst case - backup to usb drive (even flash card cover 2005 express databases) and then make clean install – a_vlad Sep 13 '18 at 11:57
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    Could you virtualize the machine? Resizing disk is easier on a VM. – vonPryz Sep 13 '18 at 12:30

Can you do it? Yes, you can. Should you do it? No, no shouldn't.

You're playing with fire, less than 10% free space on C drive is an urgent/critical flag in any decent company.

If you spot anything worth deleting, go for it. But in any case, since this is a physical server and you said Wintel team can't help you, present the scenario as an issue and a possible emergency in the future.

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Per Microsoft recommendation, it does require 4.2 GB of Disk Space for a fresh instillation: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=42299

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