February 28, 2021
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Beginner's Guide to SQL Server Database Development with VSTS Database Edition

  • By Jeffrey Juday
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At this point, I could have begun building a database in VSTS. Like other Visual Studio projects, right-clicking the project and selecting "Add Item" displays the dialog of components you can create in the project.

Instead, as stated earlier, I'm going to use an existing database, the ubiquitous AdventureWorks database. There are two ways to import TSQL into a project: importing directly from a database or importing from a file. Importing from a database will include all the TSQL in the database along with items like Roles and Users.

I prefer to develop in SQL Server Management Studio or to use a tool like ERWIN to generate the DDL, so typically I choose the file import initially and then use the Schema Compare on moving forward from there (I'll explain Schema Compare shortly.) For demonstration purposes, I'm going to import using the database import option. Figure 3 shows the database import steps.

Click here for a larger image.

Figure 3: Import database schema

With a working project and imported database, it's time to start adding things to the database and showcase some of the other development features.

Project Mechanics

As you can see in Figure 4, all database project components can be stored in a separate file. Like other Visual Studio projects each component can be checked out and versioned using source control tools such as SourceSafe or Team Foundation Server. Thus, multiple developers can better coordinate their changes and you can do things like label versions in your source control

Figure 4: Database project default view

A "Schema View" tab allows you to view the project similar to the way it would appear in Management Studio. You may find navigating the Schema view more natural than navigating the files directly. Figure 5 below displays the Schema view.

Figure 5: Database project schema view

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This article was originally published on June 10, 2008

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