I recently installed SQL Server 2014 Express on a workstation I have and am trying to deploy to SQL Azure. I've done this before on a previous workstation using SQL Server 2012 Express by doing the following:

Right click the database > Tasks > "Deploy Database to SQL Azure"

On SQL Server 2014, the option is completely missing and is instead replaced a new option: "Deploy Database to a Windows Azure VM"

I can't figure out why the option for deploying to SQL Azure is missing. Is there something that needs to be installed separately now for SQL Server 2014? From what I've read online, both options should be present for 2014 editions. Did Microsoft remove this option for SQL Server 2014 Express?

  • 1
    I ended up exporting a .bacpac to a Storage Account and just importing the bacpac to a new database. Still don't understand why that Task command was missing.
    – Ant
    Commented May 11, 2014 at 5:03
  • Same things happened to SQL 2016 CTP Express Edition, the option just didn't show up for Express Edition, Standard edition works fine. In Express edition it just has the option 'Deploy to Azure VM SQL'
    – Eugene
    Commented Aug 15, 2015 at 17:12

3 Answers 3


This is not present in SQL Server Express 2014 - see https://connect.microsoft.com/SQLServer/feedback/details/859491/deploy-database-to-windows-azure-sql-database-missing


Microsoft has changed the procedure. What you need to do is Export/Import a Data-tier Application via a BACPAC file. Microsoft explains it here (in the section Backup Package (.bacpac): http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ee210546.aspx

Here it is in a nutshell:

  • Use SQL Server Management Studio 2014
  • Right-click your local database name, then Tasks / Export Data-tier Application
  • Follow the wizard to create a BACPAC file on your local disk. This will contain your complete DB schema as well as your data.
  • In SSMS, connect to your existing Azure SQL account (tcp:xxxxxxxxxx.database.windows.net,1433)
  • Under the Azure account, right-click on the word Databases and select Import Data-tier Application
  • Using the wizard, import your BACPAC file "from local disk" When it is finished, you will have an Azure-based replica of your original database, schema, data and all.

The option is still there, it is just name of SQL Azure has changed to Windows Azure SQL Database. It is just before the option you have found already.

  • Only in the full version of SQL Server 2014 apparently - not the SQL Express version.
    – Mike Kelly
    Commented Oct 3, 2015 at 23:46

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