Restore SQL Server 2008 backup in SQL Server 2005

I have been asked this question many times – Is there a way to restore a SQL Server 2008 backup in SQL Server 2005. The plain answer is No. But there are workarounds.

The best option I know how to do this is to use the ‘Generate SQL Server Scripts’ Wizard. To do so, open SQL Server 2008 Management Studio > Databases > Right click Your Database > Tasks > Generate Scripts

Here’s a screenshot from my test machine:


A wizard appears. Follow the wizard and in the ‘Choose Script Options’, set the ‘Script for Server Version’ to ‘SQL Server 2005’ and set ‘Script Data’ to ‘True’


Now complete the wizard by saving the script and you should now have a script that can be restored in SQL Server 2005.

There’s also a tool called SQL Data Compare from RedGate that can be useful in this scenario.

About The Author

Suprotim Agarwal, MCSD, MCAD, MCDBA, MCSE, is the founder of DotNetCurry, DNC Magazine for Developers, SQLServerCurry and DevCurry. He has also authored a couple of books 51 Recipes using jQuery with ASP.NET Controls and a new one recently at The Absolutely Awesome jQuery CookBook.

Suprotim has received the prestigous Microsoft MVP award for nine times in a row now. In a professional capacity, he is the CEO of A2Z Knowledge Visuals Pvt Ltd, a digital group that represents premium web sites and digital publications comprising of Professional web, windows, mobile and cloud developers, technical managers, and architects.

Get in touch with him on Twitter @suprotimagarwal, LinkedIn or befriend him on Facebook

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