How can I practice my SQL Server, Sybase, and Oracle skills on a linux box? – Education Career Blog

I have a linux box. When I had a Windows box, I was able to download the free non-commericial use MS SQL Server.

How can I run free personal copies of SQL Server, Sybase, or Oracle on my linux box?

I don’t need to to have any permanent databases or any great amount of storage. I just want to (re-)familiarize myself with these different SQL dialects, and compare techniques and timing to the MySQL and postgresql I do have installed.



At least for Oracle, they have their Express Edition, which is free download and available for Linux.

For SQL Server, you will have to get Windows, either as a separate OS, or in a virtual machine (like Virtual Box or VMWare).


SQL Server does not run on Linux. MySQL, however, would and likely came with your Linux distribution.

The Oracle download is here.

Sybase is here.


Use Xen or VMWare to create a new virtual machine running Windows or whatever platform you fancy.

If you set the VM to full screen it is pretty much like running natively. Alternatively, connect to your virtual machines via a linux Remote Desktop/RDP client.

If you have a student ID, you can get Windows Server 2003 & 2008 + SQL Server 2005 & 2008 + VS 2005 & 2008 + a bunch of other goodies for free via Microsoft Dreamspark —

Note that you can probably obtain a student ID by signing up for a random class (and then dropping it) at your local community college.


Easiest way to get started with Oracle

Running this gets you an installed and configured server. Download the (also free) client and developer tools and you’re set.

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