SQL Packager and SQL Server MDF Formats

February 6, 2006
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In a current project I am working on with a distributed team, we use a set of detached database (mdf/ldf) files to keep current the latest version of the database we’re working on. I use SQL Server 2000 and 2005 on my local dev-box, but since this customer is going to use SQL Server 2000 I’ve been trying to keep the work on SQL Server 2000.

No real problem so far.  One of the dev’s on the project only has 2005 installed, but this isn’t that big an issue and I’ve seen no compatibility problems so far…except…

One issue is that if you attach a detached database (mdf/ldf) to SQL Server 2005 it can *never* be re-attached to 2000.  You must transfer the data back to 2000 if you need it there. Unfortunately the dev that is using 2005 made some schema changes.  Ho hum…what to do.

SQL Packager has yet again come to the rescue as I used it to copy all the changes from the 2005 to 2000 with no problems.  This saved me hours of time manually finding and making the changes.  I simply created a database “update” project and used my 2000 database as the base and the 2005 server as the changed server.  It just worked.  I love when that happens.

Big props to SQL Packager for saving my day.