I have been wracking my brain over upgrading sql server 2005 to sql server 2005 sp4. I have a script for installing new instances of sql servers for all versions and they all work wonderfully. Problem is, sql server 2012 can't upgrade sql 2005 SP3 and below. So, I have to install up to sql 2005 SP4, AND THEN upgrade through sql 2012, which is highly annoying.

I need to do this silently via the command line, but I cannot get it to work at all. Here are some samples I tried:

 "SQLSP4.exe /quiet /instancename="FOOBAR""

among a couple other variations. I could not find anything online at all. In fact, the one helpful thread ended in saying that Microsoft didn't have any support for this, but I'm not sure about that.

What can be done here? Does anyone have any experience in updating service packs via command line?

  • Your syntax is correct. Is there anything in the log files to indicate what the upgrade process is doing? Look at C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\90\Setup Bootstrap\Log. Also, what is the specific release number of your current installation? i.e. 9.xx.xxxx
    – Mike Fal
    Jan 2, 2014 at 16:10

2 Answers 2


I have used below in past to upgrade all instances running sql 2005 to SP4. Just put this in a .bat file

@echo off
set hour=%time:~0,2%
if "%hour:~0,1%"==" " set hour=0%time:~1,1%
echo      Started at %date% %time%
SQLServer2005SP4-KB2463332-x64-ENU.exe /allinstances /quiet

echo      Completed at %date% %time%

Here's what I've used when updating SQL 2005 to SP4 but I was updating all insances so you might need to adjust if you have multiple instances on a server and only want to update one. \\fileServer\SQL2005\SPs\SQLServer2005SP4-KB2463332-x64-ENU.exe /quiet /allinstances

  • I tried this line and it worked to a point. However, it will come to the "following components are being configured" and it doesn't list any instances. I do have an instance running from a previous sql 2005 version, but it just isn't seeing it somehow. Any ideas? Mar 7, 2013 at 16:22

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