I was a little confused on this. Our SharePoint 2007 has SharePoint on the backend for some reason? Is this right?

This leads me to believe that I need to install SharePoint 2010 on the backend/database server as well as the web server. Is this true?

4 Answers 4


If you have SQL Server Reporting Services in SharePoint 2007 Native Mode, this would have required SharePoint installed on the SSRS server. This is probably why your set up looks like it does - it's much cheaper to install a non-accessible SharePoint instance on your DB server than it is to install a DB instance on one of your WFE machines.

It's just a result of licensing, costs, etc. I'm not entirely sure what the required set up is for using SSRS in SharePoint 2010 so I don't know if this same configuration is required.

*Note that SSRS can really drag down your farm performance if you are using only 1 SQL Server to host the SharePoint Content Databases AND your SSRS instance. It's better to set up a server just to handle the SSRS stuff and leave your other server(s) to handle just SharePoint related tasks. Just a random aside based on observations.

This blog post discusses the server configuration for Report Services and SharePoint. Look at 03 - Available Server. http://mosshowto.blogspot.com/2009/03/reporting-services-sharepoint-multiple.html


No, you don't need to install anything to do with SharePoint on your database tier (nor should you). It just needs to be running SQL Server and have good network bandwidth and latency to the other servers in your farm.

This is true for both 2007 and 2010 versions of SharePoint.

  • 1
    That's true for an environment not using Integrated SSRS. To use SSRS in SharePoint 2007 you have to have the SharePoint installed on the SSRS server in order for SSRS to access the SharePoint Object Model.
    – Erik Noren
    Commented Jul 21, 2011 at 17:41
  • Okay, agreed, in the event that you are using Reporting Services integration, you need an application server in your farm with the Report Server installed and SharePoint because of the OM. You could make your database server double up as an application server to achieve this. But that's not the same as saying you necessarily have to install SharePoint on your data tier.
    – SPDoctor
    Commented Jul 21, 2011 at 18:50
  • Agreed. The questions was sufficiently short I took put a little of my own bias on it and assumed 1 SQL Server + 2 or 3 WFE. Seems fairly standard for smaller shops. The same limits would lead to "just install SharePoint on the DB and it will just work(TM)" with SSRS.
    – Erik Noren
    Commented Jul 21, 2011 at 19:13

If the database server is also going to be included in serving content and or serve in an application role, then you'd install SharePoint on that as well. Otherwise, no, you shouldn't be needing to install it on the DB server.


Did your devs mean the following?

install just the central admin and application servers on the backend (not being accessible by inter/intranet). Only make the web frontends publicly available. This is security-wise smart to do. SharePoint is not needed on the database server, if the the database server's only role is to, euh, be a database server :)

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