SQL Server 2005 Installation and the Power of 2

My colleague John O’Shea ran into an unusual issue installing SQL Server 2005 on 4-socket, 6-core machines, which I thought I would share…
We’ve started using DL 580 G5 4 socket 6-core machines and deployed a few of these boxes running SQL Server 2008 with 64 GB of memory. We recently encountered a problem installing SQL Server 2005 on the 4-way 6-cores. Apparently the SQL Server 2005 installer verifies the number of processors is a power of 2. SQL Server 2008 does not do this. A 4-socket 6-core is 24 which is not a power of 2. We’ve been using SQL Server 2005 for nearly four years and this is the first model server we’ve encountered the issue. After reading through this KB article and opening a call with Premier we were able to workaround the issue by following the workaround documented in the KB article for Windows 2003– edit boot.ini setting "/NUMPROC= 1"(sets Windows to a single processor), and then installing SQL Server 2005. The KB article stops there, but the next thing you need to do is install SQL Server 2005 Service Pack 2 or later and then you can remove the NUMPROC entry from boot.ini so all processors are recognized. The workaround works for both clustered and standalone machines alike.
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