This guide shows you a SharePoint 2010 installation on Windows Server 2008 using SQL Server 2008. It includes the SharePoint 2010 Products Preparation Tool, the installation process and the SharePoint 2010 Configuration Wizard.
After finishing the process you are able to launch Central Administration.
SharePoint 2010 Products Preparation Tool
Please log on using the SharePoint installation account (SharePoint Setup Administrator - spAdmin). Execute setup and install SharePoint 2010 software requirements.
If you configured Application Server and Web Server (IIS) role as described the process takes only some minutes or less.
SharePoint Server 2010 installation
Enter the product key and choose the advanced installation mode.
Always use complete install so you are able to change server roles as you want to.
Wait until the installation of the binary files has finished.
After that the installation will continue with the SharePoint Configuration Wizard.
Start the SharePoint Products Configuration Wizard.
Click yes and choose to create a new server farm.
You don't need to care about stopped services if you create a new server farm.
Enter the application server name and add the farm account spFarmAcc. Permissions are assigned automatically by the setup administrator.
Enter a pass phrase to secure farm configuration data. It is also needed if you join a new server to the farm.
Note: If you have trouble with the configuration database the comment of Mike M. might help you. He used SQL Express where the SQL Browser was disabled. You have to enable it into Windows Services.
Update: Please also read the comment by tmack below... he needed to use SP2010\SQLEXPRESS as the Database Server Name when using SQL Server Express.
Select a port and a authentication provider. How about 2010 as a port number ;)
Configure SharePoint Server 2010.
Et voilà SharePoint Server 2010 was successfully installed. The next article descries the configuration using Central Administration.
Step 9: SharePoint Server 2010 initial configuration