BE 2010 R3 stops at SQL Express 2005 SP3 as a database on which to install the BEDB.
BE 2012 has supprot for SQL Express 2008 R2.
You can verify the first statement on the link below:
Pg 48 & 49 mentions that SQL 2008 (SP1 & SP2) & SQL 2008 R2 (including SP1) is supported as a database repository in BE 2010 R2 & BE 2010 R3
Apparently i cant un-install the current version of SQL express due to windows needing it but i can install the R2 version along side it. If I install SQL server 2008 R2 Express along side, should i move the database to the newer version?
...if it can co-exist, and you want to make use of better features in it, then go for it. Just grab a copy of the Data/Catalogs folders, and specifically the bedb.bak file!
SQL Server is not really required to host the BE database it can stay on a SQL Express version in the most complex of installations and work well. Also it is recommended to keep Be on its own seperate instance as any unsupported updates/changes done to you SQL Server instance can leave the Be in a not working state. To avoid changes to be made I would surely go with a SQL Express instance dedicated to BE (cheaper this way as well)
Usually, the only time when a different edition of SQL is required when the BEDB goes over 4GB limit (again which happens when using a large CASO-MMS or SSO setups) Else as suggested, the default SQL instance should be just fine.
Oh thanks! I think you are right. I was merely responding to "Will i need the better features of SQL server for backup exec?"
Edit - But all in all it is better to keep BE on a seperate instance as I have seen updates being applied to SQL instances by different products (Yes even SEP) can leave BE down.