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Is there any way to export a Microsoft SQL Server database to an sql script?

I'm looking for something which behaves similarly to mysqldump, taking a database name, and producing a single script which will recreate all the tables, stored procedures, reinsert all the data etc.

I've seen http://vyaskn.tripod.com/code.htm#inserts, but I ideally want something to recreate everything (not just the data) which works in a single step to produce the final script.

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@Matt Yes, it doesn't export the data. That's why I mentioned that you should combine it with the script you suggested. This method does builds a script in the correct order though. –  Julio César Aug 25 '08 at 2:40
Actually, in Mangement Studio 2008, you just have to turn on the "export data" option, and the script will contain both schema and insert statements. –  user24161 Feb 10 '10 at 21:37

9 Answers 9

In SQL Server Management Studio right-click your database and select Tasks / Generate Scripts. Follow the wizard and you'll get a script that recreates the data structure in the correct order according to foreign keys. On the wizard step titled "Set Scripting Options" choose "Advanced" and modify the "Types of data to script" option to "Schema and data"

TIP: In the final step select "Script to a New Query Window", it'll work much faster that way.

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Just remember to go into advanced options and tell it to script not just the schema, but also the data. –  romkyns Aug 22 '12 at 14:50
@romkyns deserves all the up-votes! "Types of data to script" is the exact option name. You will want to select "Schema and data." –  Juventus18 Jan 16 '13 at 20:17
Main issue with scripts generated from SSMS is that they are not ordered correctly to take dependencies into account. This is not a problem for small databases where you can do this manually but it is definitely a problem when database gets over 50 objects. So far we successfully used ApexSQL Script for this. It’s a premium tool but you can use it in trial mode to get the job done. I think Red Gate also has a similar tool. –  David Smithers Jun 21 '13 at 8:12

Try Sql Server Database Publishing Wizard. You may need to re-order the script to make it run in one shot though because of dependencies but it will include your schema and data.

If you havent got 2005 SQL XMO objects installed, you'll get an error when you run the wizard. You'll want the Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Management Objects Collection

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Actually, you don't need to reorder the script, because it drops all constraints, create the schema, insert the data, and, finaly, recreate the constraints. –  Daniel Silveira May 8 '09 at 21:31
Awesome, that's pretty neat –  Beep beep Sep 8 '10 at 4:16

I found SQL Dumper pretty useful. It's free so you can give it a try. It lets you choose the database tables and columns, views and even the results of custom queries as SQL insert statements.

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Last stable version doesn't work with stored procedures. –  VMAtm Jul 26 '12 at 7:00

Try DBSourceTools. It's designed to script out a source database, and re-deploy to a target database. It scripts schema and data.

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Not finding the right tool, I decided to create my own: a sqlserverdump command line utility. Check it out on http://sqlserverdump.codeplex.com/. It will recreate schema and data in a single step.

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The recommended solution only works on sql 2000 and 2005. If you're looking to do this on SQL 2008,

You can do it with SQL 2008 without any other plug ins. Right click on the database and select "Tasks -> Generate Scripts...". Select the database and what you want to back up. Click next and set the "Script Data" to true.

Further documentation at link:


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Ombelt make a nice tool for exporting MS SQL server DB's. www.ombelt.com

a lot like other DB's dump facilities.

Works for me.

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SQL Server Database Publishing Wizard seems indeed to be the best way to do it. The problem with this is that it does not seem to run on Windows 7. I had to use my old computer to use it. On the positive side, it works with older SQL Server versions like 2000.

For newer SQL versions and operating systems, this software might be worth looking into: http://sqlbackupandftp.com/

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I invoked that wizard (SQL Server 2005) and the script declares all the stored procedures before any of the tables they reference.

Still, I'm glad you pointed it out, because I'm only trying to find differences in two databases that are supposed to be the same in structure. I can drag the files over to Unix and run diff or sdiff.

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protected by Iain Sep 22 '11 at 6:55

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