Microsoft Office Outlook 2007 Business Contact Manager (BCM) uses SQL Server 2005 Express as the database for the Customer Relationship Management (CRM) application. All editions of SQL Server 2005 have compatibility issues with Windows 7. These issues have been addressed in SQL Server 2005 Service Pack 3 (SP3).

When you install Outlook 2007 BCM on a workstation running Windows 7, you will see the compatibility warning as shown in Figure 1. If you click the Check for Solutions Online button, the current outcome returned explains that there is no solution available. You can continue the installation by selecting the Run Program button. After you have completed the installation of Outlook 2007 BCM, don’t start Outlook. Download and install SP3 for SQL Server 2005 Express first. You can download SQL Server 2005 Express SP3 from Microsoft.

Outlook 2007 BCM will install SQL Server 2005 Express by default as part of its installation process; however, if a previous installation of SQL Server 2005 exists, you’ll have the option of using it to host the BCM database. This means that you could install SQL Server 2005 Express and apply SQL Server 2005 SP3 even before you install Outlook 2007 BCM.

Whether you install SQL Server 2005 separately or as part of the Outlook 2007 BCM installation, you need to apply SQL Server 2005 SP3 prior to running Outlook 2007. Outlook 2007 BCM will then function as it’s expected to on Windows 7. Of course, you should update Outlook with the latest Office service packs and patches with Microsoft Update or your enterprise patch management solution.