I try to clone a database from an Sql Server on my local machine v15 (2019) to a server machine v14(2017). I did a .bak file and when I tried to import on the server side it says:

System.Data.SqlClient.SqlError: The database was backed up on a server running version 15.00.4083. That version is incompatible with this server, which is running version 14.00.2037. Either restore the database on a server that supports the backup, or use a backup that is compatible with this server. (Microsoft.SqlServer.SmoExtended)

Is there a "compatibility" backup mode on the 14-15 Sql Server versions?

local (on docker, Linux):

Microsoft SQL Server 2019 (RTM-CU8-GDR) (KB4583459) - 15.0.4083.2 (X64) Nov 2 2020 18:35:09 Copyright (C) 2019 Microsoft Corporation Developer Edition (64-bit) on Linux (Ubuntu 18.04.5 LTS)

distant (on Windows Server)

Microsoft SQL Server 2017 (RTM-GDR) (KB4583456) - 14.0.2037.2 (X64)
Nov 2 2020 19:19:59 Copyright (C) 2017 Microsoft Corporation Standard Edition (64-bit) on Windows Server 2019 Standard 10.0 (Build 17763: ) (Hypervisor)


1 Answer 1


Just succeeded to clone the Database, using on local: In the SSMS, right click on the database to export, then Tasks => Export Data-tier Application it creates a bacpac file. enter image description here

Copy the backpac to the distant server, and there in SSMS, right click on the "Databases" folder and then Import Data-tier Application, use the copied backpac file.

It copies the schema and the data as well...

  • 2
    Yes BACPAC (schema and data) or DACPAC (if you just need the schema, no data) are the way to go when you need to migrate to an older version from a newer one. Glad you were able to figure it out!
    – J.D.
    Apr 6, 2021 at 12:14
  • 1
    Many thanks, this helped me out! For those curious as to why .bacpac is even smaller than a compressed .BAK, the difference is that the BAK also may save pending transactions, and the bacpac does not. See here
    – RolfBly
    Oct 28, 2022 at 10:25

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