SQL Azure – How to connect SQL Management Studio and import Northwind database

Taking my cloud education further … I wanted to explore the SQL Server relational database offering.   The first trick was to create a new “server” from the Azure portal.  After that I opened the web based SQL Azure portal to confirm it was online and healthy.

I was surprised by how easy it was to create a connection.  Simply create a firewall exclusion to your current IP address … and boom … you can open the SQL Azure with SQL Management Studio locally.  Pretty cool!  Hot

The Azure Management Portal is proving very capable.  It even has a handy popup dialog with connection strings for convenient copy/paste.  Here is the process I used to import sample Northwind data:

  • Open both instances with SQL Management Studio
  • Right click local tables to build “CREATE TABLE” statements.  Copy/paste those from local to Azure and execute.  This creates the schema.  There are some limitations of Azure so you may have to double check your TSQL syntax (http://www.tewari.info/2009/09/10/sql-azure-notes/)
  • Use the SQL Import wizard to migrate data.   For Azure be sure to select “.Net Framework Data Provider for SqlServer”  destination.
  • To resolve red errors, ignore [ntext] or [image] data types during migration.  SQL Azure does NOT support [ntext] or [image] so I just removed those columns.   Not sure of the best way to migrate this type of data yet.  [ntext] should probably cast to VARCHAR(8000) and truncate anything longer.  [image] should probably be saved to the filesystem (JPG/PNG/etc.) and then a URL string pointer to the image file kept in SQL.
  • Click next and finish. Congratulations!   You now now have sample data in SQL Azure.

 

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