Error: “The INSTALLSHAREDWOWDIR command line value is not valid. Please ensure the specified path is valid and different than the INSTALLSHAREDDIR path.”



Aside from the regular disclaimer about don’t modify the registry unless you have backups and know what you are doing, I want to also mention that the solution that worked for me does not apply to all situations. For example, if I experienced this issue while installing on an Itanium processor, then the solution would be different (Microsoft Support, 2011).
So, having said that, the solution for this particular situation was the following:
1. Open the Registry Editor
2. Export the following key (as a backup)

3. Delete the key.

4. Close the Registry Editor.
5. Open the Command Prompt (Start > Run > CMD)
6. Type the following command:
[Path to Setup.exe]\setup.exe /action=install /INSTALLSHAREDDIR=”C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\” /INSTALLSHAREDWOWDIR=”C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SQL Server\”
7. Press Enter. The SQL Server Setup launches from the beginning.

“INSTALLSHAREDDIR” is the 64-bit shared component files directory with a path of “Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server” (Microsoft Support, 2011)

“INSTALLSHAREDWOWDIR” is the 32-bit shared component files with a path of “Program Files(x86)\Microsoft SQL Server” (Microsoft Support, 2011)

When specifying the the directories, there are known issues with putting a “\” at the end of the path. For this reason, omit the symbol.

Good – Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server
Bad – Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\

From Reference

Microsoft Support (2011). You receive an error message if you change the “Shared component directory” path on the Feature Selection screen when you install SQL Server 2008 on a computer that is running an Itanium-based version of Windows. Retrieved May 17, 2011 from

MSDN (2011). How to: Install SQL Server 2008 from the Command Prompt. Retrieved May 17, 2011 from

MSDN (2011). Feature Selection. Retrieved May 17, 2011 from

MSDN (2011). File Locations for Default and Named Instances of SQL Server. Retrieved May 17, 2011 from