Deborah's Developer MindScape

         Tips and Techniques for Web and .NET developers.

August 26, 2012

Goodbye VS 2010 Database Project, We Hardly Knew Ye

Filed under: C#,VB.NET,Visual Studio @ 5:57 pm

In this prior post, I introduced the new VS 2010 Database Project. Forget all of it. VS 2012 comes with a new Database Project!

I have not yet worked with the new Visual Studio 2012 Database Project, but will write a post as soon as I do.

For now, I wanted to provide your choices if you want your solution to work in both VS 2010 and VS 2012:

  • You can choose to not upgrade the Database Project when first opening the project in VS 2012.


OK, I had to read the first sentence of this dialog box a few times before I understood what it was trying to tell me. Some hyphens may have helped to make it more clear: "These projects are either not supported or need project-behavior-impacting modifications to open in this version of Visual Studio."

This basically means that the projects listed are either not supported in or not compatible with Visual Studio 2012 without making some changes.

To prevent Visual Studio from upgrading the projects for use in Visual  Studio  2012, just uncheck the checkbox and click OK.

NOTE: Even though this dialog says you will be able to open an upgraded Database Projects in Visual Studio 2010 SP1, you can’t. Not unless you install an additional set of tools. More on this under the next bullet point below.

  • You can choose to upgrade the Database Project and then add the tools required for your Visual Studio 2010 to read the new Visual Studio 2012 Database projects.

To allow Visual Studio 2012 to upgrade the Database project, leave the project checked in the dialog shown above and click OK.

The Migration Report will notify you of the changes that Visual Studio made to your solution. It  also provides details on the tool you need to install in order to open the Visual Studio 2012 Database Project in Visual Studio 2010.


If you attempt to open a solution containing a Visual Studio 2012 Database Project in Visual Studio 2010, you will see the following dialog.


Use this link to download the SQL Server Data Tools for Visual Studio 2010. These tools will allow you to open the Visual Studio 2012 Database project in Visual Studio 2010. If you are working on the solution with other team members that are using Visual Studio 2010, they will also need to install these tools.

I didn’t want to interfere with any of the other members of my team, which were all using VS 2010, so I opted for the first choice: not upgrading the Database Project. What you decide depends on your situation and your team.


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