Hi guys got a problem with a database.

I've been asked to perform some indexing and delete queries on a live database, so first of I wanted to get the database to our dev server so I can test out some things before I commit to live.

Unfortunately the dev is SQL Server 2008 and the live is SQL Server 2012. So I've had to try and downgrade the database.

Database is a lovely 33gig. and I've started to use the generate script wizard to create a 2008 version.

Problem is it gets so far then errors on random tables. So far I have no idea what to do to solve the issue. In the advanced settings of the wizard I select schema and data (yup going to be huge)

Error is due to my pc running out of disk space. I have a problem, how do I recreate this DB in 2008 that's both fast and easy? generating the script like that hasn't worked.

Open to ideas guys!

  • 6
    Can you actually install 2012 version - that would be the easiest way?
    – Rafal Ziolkowski
    Jan 15, 2014 at 14:58
  • 4
    Gotta agree... I've done downgrades from 2008 to 2005 and it was an absolute nightmare.
    – Bandrami
    Jan 15, 2014 at 15:00
  • 1
    Why do you have a development system based on SQL 2008 when you have 2012 in production? That's not wise at all.
    – Marian
    Jan 15, 2014 at 15:02
  • 2
    @StevenSmith a duplicate is not useful only due to the accepted answer (this is the whole reason we keep other answers around on all questions, even when one has been accepted - the accepted answer is the most useful to the asker, but the other answers might be more useful to other readers). Did you look at all of the answers? Jan 15, 2014 at 15:23
  • 2
    The issue is the same whether you are trying to go from 2012 -> 2008 or 2008 -> 2005 or 2014 -> 2008 R2. The database files are simply not backward compatible, and you need to use one of the other suggested approaches. I don't know of any alternate solutions that are only viable on one specific downgrade path. And still, I agree with @HLGEM that you need to push harder on just getting them to upgrade. Will be so much easier than what you're trying to do now. Jan 15, 2014 at 15:27

1 Answer 1


One option is third party tools: Red Gate's SQL Compare and SQL Data compare are very good for this sort of thing, and what we use internally. They will let you handle the data table by table, so that might help keep size down. Not sure if they any upper limits on size.

  • yeh ive heard of them, problem is were on budget and so this thing is sort of a sit down discussion, and i need a nasty quick fix :(
    – lemunk
    Jan 15, 2014 at 15:06
  • 3
    @StevenSmith Good, cheap, quick : tell your boss they can pick two, but not all three. Jan 15, 2014 at 15:28
  • @AaronBertrand yes! this feels like classic I.T meets business!
    – lemunk
    Jan 15, 2014 at 15:31

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