If the option is selected, SQL Compare shows the columns as different objects; you can select the objects for deployment. SQL Compare uses temporary tables to make sure that any data in the table isn't lost. SQL Compare attempts to recognize renamed columns by the similarity of the names and the data types of the columns.
When a renamed column is recognized as such, SQL Compare renames the column as appropriate.
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However, if the names and data types are very different, SQL Compare may consider the renamed column to be a completely different column. To avoid data loss, before you deploy the databases you must take care to preserve any data in the two columns, and merge them following the deployment. SQL Compare will fix this inconsistency if the object needs to be altered by editing the name within the object definition to match the object name. Refer to your SQL Server documentation for more information.
The Export and Import Process
SQL Compare doesn't compare or deploy system objects, except for users, roles, and system schemas. If objects that are used in replication are deployed, errors may occur. For example, SQL Compare can't drop a table if it is used for replication.
Therefore, if you intend to deploy users, make sure that their user names are different. SQL Compare compares and deploys changes to users, such as changes to permissions. However, SQL Compare doesn't compare or deploy modifications to user passwords. SQL Compare supports the deployment of databases that use multiple filegroups.
However, you must make sure that the filegroups have been created on the target server prior to deployment. If the filegroups do not exist, the deployment will fail. Disabling this option can result in faster performance. When this option is disabled, SQL Compare can't compare the encrypted objects, or display their creation SQL scripts, and can't deploy them.
Partition schemes can be specified for tables so that the table is stored in several filegroups. By default, SQL Compare ignores filegroups. I ran with Jamie Thomson's code from a while back and blogged about it. That may give you some ideas, but does increase the size of your post-deploy section. I used to avoid users in the SQL Server Data Tools database project but learned to used them over the years and I ended up using a branching scheme to manage this with different environments since in most cases like Peter Schott stated, different environments have different users.
In my projects, I typically setup the structure to look similar to the following:. In some solutions, I have multiple database projects and the logins only need to be in one project.
The projects that need to have the login usually one project per solution are the only projects that have the login file to avoid build errors for the database users in each database project. I manage database role memberships in the RoleMemberships. That file looks similar to the following:.
With this setup, I no longer need to avoid users on deploy and can fully manage the database users in the database project. I also never need to use a pre- or post-deploy script for users or role memberships. By doing it this way I also was able to use the publish feature so I ended up saving my publish settings to a publish profile and save those under the PublishProfiles folder and deploys are now as easy as going to the publish profile file and clicking the Generate Script or Publish button.
Many times, building the solution or project will expose things you may need to fix so you get clean code that sometimes is not obvious when doing schema compares between your project and a database server. In some ways the downside is I have a bunch of redundant code by having a branch for each environment but on the positive side, I have a replica of a particular environment in the database project environment branch and can make changes there without going to the database until I am ready.
I generally use the ChangeScripts section only for production to keep a record of all deployed changes. Another con to using this style of branching is sometimes managing the security changes between branches can be a pain, like adding new users to dev branch and then merging that change to QA and then making sure to not just accept the code from dev that would overwrite your users in QA with dev users.
Over the years, I've learned what to look for and that generally means if there is a database.
Deployment Unit Object
Whether you decide to branch or not, the setup as I use it works to keep a particular database server and the logins and users synchronized with the project and it does not recreate the users unless they don't exist on the server. This is good when restoring production database into an environment that doesn't have the same users and the database publish will handle the user part with ease for that environment.
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