This documentation refers to PhraseExpress v6 beta. The documentation for current v5 is available here.

SQL Server

PhraseExpress can connect to a Microsoft SQL Server to share phrases with a client-/server architecture in professional/enterprise networks.


Benefits of using a SQL server:
  • Phrase changes are immediately available to all users.
  • SQL servers are designed to handle a large number of clients.
  • Multiple users can edit the phrase database simultaneously. No need to wait until a user has finished editing.
  • The client-/server architecture prevents write collisions and version conflicts.
  • Clients load the phrase contents on demand in the moment of text insertion to minimize memory consumption on the local clients.
  • The phrase database is centrally stored and can be included in your existing SQL backup system.
  • License keys are centrally managed. No need to walk from computer to computer to enter license keys or change PhraseExpress configuration.
  • You can define "master users" with extra credentials. Those have general access to all phrases and can centrally configure client program settings of all users.
  • Each user can have a personal phrase folder to store their personal phrases.


  • PhraseExpress is very easy-to-use with a SQL Server, but setup in highly customized system environments may require advanced IT skills. We kindly ask for your understanding, that installation support in such case is not free-of-charge. If you are overwhelmed, please consider using PhraseExpress with cloud sharing which is easy to setup.
  • Phrases are inserted with a small delay as the content is dynamically loaded from the SQL server over the network connection. For timing-critical applications such as spelling correction text replacements, you can use a separate additional local phrase file for all phrases, that is loaded into the fast local memory for instant insertion.
  • The SQL database is not available if the network connection is interrupted.
  • SQL Server support is not available for iOS or if using M1 hardware. Please use cloud sharing for Apple iOS devices.

Connect to SQL server

To connect a SQL server:
  1. Open the PhraseExpress main program window.
  2. Select the main menu command "File » Connect to a SQL server".
  3. Enter the computer name or IP address of the Windows PC running the Microsoft SQL server:

  4. Enter the SQL server TCP port (if different from the default port 1433).
  5. Enter the SQL database name (if different from the default name "phrases)".

If you don't know the SQL server connection data, you can create a configuration file in the "PhraseExpress SQL Client Manager". This file contains the connection information which can be loaded by clicking on "Load configuration file".


On a Mac, check following tips:
  • Make sure, that SMB file sharing is enabled on the Mac under "System Preferences » Sharing » Options » Share files and folders using SMB" to allow the Mac finding the Windows computer by its computer name (see macOS help).
  • Try both options to connect to the SQL Server, by the server computer name and alternatively by the IP address of the SQL server computer.
  • Open the Terminal and try pinging the SQL server IP address (see important hint below):
    1. Open "Terminal" by navigating to /Applications/Utilities.
    2. In the Terminal window type ping <server> , where <server> is the hostname or IP address of the server that you want to ping and press Enter.
    3. To stop pinging, press CMD + C.
    Fix the network connection if you cannot ping the SQL server computer.

Ping replies are disabled by default on Windows! ICMP responses must be enabled before you can ping a Windows PC:

  1. Open Windows Defender Firewall and select Advanced Settings in the sidebar.
  2. Switch to Inbound Rules via the Getting Started page or the sidebar.
  3. Find the rule named "Core Networking Diagnostics - ICMP Echo Request (ICMPv4-In)" with Profile of "Private, Public" (unless you're on a corporate domain).
  4. Right-click the rule and Enable Rule.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents