Is it possible to load a backup of SQL server 2014db into SQL server 2012?

Trying to import/restore is throwing backward compatibility issues.



1 Answer 1


You CANNOT do this - you cannot attach/detach or backup/restore a database from a newer version of SQL Server (2014) down to an older version (2012) - the internal file structures are just too different to support backwards compatibility.

You can either get around this problem by

  • using the same version of SQL Server on all your machines - then you can easily backup/restore databases between instances

  • otherwise you can create the database scripts for both structure (tables, view, stored procedures etc.) and for contents (the actual data contained in the tables) either in SQL Server Management Studio (Tasks > Generate Scripts) or using a third-party tool

  • or you can use a third-party tool like Red-Gate's SQL Compare and SQL Data Compare to do "diffing" between your source and target, generate update scripts from those differences, and then execute those scripts on the target platform; this works across different SQL Server versions.

  • Can you do it if the database would be in 110 compatibility mode?
    – BuahahaXD
    Commented Apr 15, 2015 at 9:47
  • 2
    @BuahahaXD: No, even with a "back dated" compatibility level setting the database structures will be those of SQL2014. The compatibility modes only affect certain behaviour, not the underlying structure. Commented Apr 15, 2015 at 10:13
  • DBAreactions to this question
    – Yaroslav
    Commented Apr 15, 2015 at 10:25

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