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Starting Team Database Development

Before you can manage changes to database objects and settings or to server objects and settings, you must first create a database project, Data-tier Application project, or a server project. The project is the offline representation of the objects and settings for the database or server. For more information, see An Overview of Database and Server Projects.

You can import objects and settings from an existing database or server, or you can define objects and configure settings within the project that you just created. You can then check in the project to version control, from which the team can build and deploy changes to isolated development environments. For an overview of how Visual Studio helps you manage changes to your database, see Managing Database Change.

The following table contains common scenarios that you might encounter when you start to develop databases in a team environment.

Scenario

Supporting Content

You want to understand how you can use features of Visual Studio to manage changes to your databases.

Getting Started with Database Features in Visual Studio

You want to define and deploy your database by using Data-tier Application Components.

Creating and Managing Data-tier Applications (Microsoft web site)

Your database does not refer to other databases, shared server objects, or SQL common language run-time (CLR) objects.

Starting Team Development of Databases

Your database refers to at least one other database.

Starting Team Development of Databases that Reference Other Databases

Your database refers to at least one SQLCLR object.

Starting Team Development of Databases that Reference SQLCLR Objects

Your database refers to shared server objects, such as logins or keys.

Starting Team Development of Databases that Reference Shared Server Objects

You want to manage changes to large databases.

Starting Team Development of Large Databases

Your database uses one or more XML Schema Collections.

Starting Team Development of Databases that Use XML Schema Collections

You want to merge objects from several small databases into a single database project.

Merging Multiple Databases into a Database Project

The following table contains additional content that supports the previous scenarios.

Task

Supporting Content

Migrate existing database scripts: You can use your existing database scripts to begin team development in Visual Studio.

Migrate from another version control system: Visual Studio Team Foundation Server provides the most integration with the database features of Visual Studio. If you already have files in another version control system, you might be able to migrate those files and their version control history to Team Foundation Server.

If you are using some other version control system, you can still migrate your files to Team Foundation Server, even if you cannot migrate the version control history. You can create a database project, add any existing scripts, import your database schema from your production server, and then add the project to version control. This actually starts a new project.

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