Deploying SSDT Scripts (With My Good Eye Closed)

(If anyone actually gets the reference: kudos. If not, then it’s just that you’re not a Soundgarden fan)

So, there’s something that has been troubling me about deploying to databases with SSDT for some time. Actually, it’s not a SSDT-exclusive problem per se, it’s more of a database/release management process.

What it pertains to is that most people like to create the deployment script for review prior to deploying to production. This makes sense if you are new to the Continuous Deployment process, and that maybe sometimes SSDT creates scripts that are not quite expected. You may skip this because you feel rather more confident in your deployments, or the database sufficiently simple enough to just deploy without having to review. But generating the script as a deploy artefact is still a good idea, because auditing.

At any rate, the script is generated and maybe reviewed….. so then what? In SSDT there is no way to create and deploy script in one step; they are two distinct steps. And even if they were one step, this would still not resolve the issue that troubles me. So what is this issue?

The issue is that by creating a script, and then running the deploy, you cannot be sure that the database is in the exact same state that it was when the initial script was generated. If you don’t already know, SSDT runs a deploy entirely in memory, so as mentioned there is no script created. You have to explicitly create the script as part of the process. Or, if you have already created one, you have to re-create the script.
Continue reading “Deploying SSDT Scripts (With My Good Eye Closed)”

Deploy Cubes Using Powershell: The Script


Recently someone got in touch with me about one of my earliest posts. I realised I had made a mistake on that post and had updated. But I also realised that the script itself is actually part of a PowerShell module. So wanting to make things as easy as possible, and being the helpful guy that I am, I have altered that example into a script which I am posting here.

It’s worth stressing that the errors that output to the console are fairly generic, and that there is a log file that will contain all the information if there are any errors.

Continue reading “Deploy Cubes Using Powershell: The Script”

SSISMSBuild Updated and Moved

New! (Sorta) Improved! (Kinda)

In a long running series of loosely related posts, I have updated the SSISMSBuild Project that I uploaded to CodePlex some years ago.

But wait, there’s more!

The updates are just references and updating the .net target framework to keep it current, however I also have moved it from CodePlex to GitHub. Mainly because I’ve started uploading other projects there so I want to keep my git skills fresh because I tend to forget stuff twice as quickly as I learn them!


Once you download the solution, you may find that the references to a few of the dlls are broken. This is a common problem with these dlls, and the solution is to unload the project and edit the references. Chances are the dlls will be in this location. C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SQL Server\120\Tools\Binn\ManagementStudio

You will need client tools installed as part of your SQL Server installation or the dlls won’t be on your box. Either way just search for those dll names in “C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SQL Server\” and they will probably be found.


Connect VSTS Package Management to Octopus

As part of the Visual Studio Team Services offering, Microsoft have added a Package Management module. Though still only in preview mode, you are able to set up feeds and then publish NuGet packages either through NuGet command line or as a step in a Visual Studio build. I’m going to assume you’ve read the documentation and set up a feed, and that as part of your build you wish to publish a NuGet package to your new feed, and then you want to add the feed as a service on Octopus. I’m also going to assume you are using the NuGet package step instead of OctoPack to make your NuGet packages. Continue reading “Connect VSTS Package Management to Octopus”

Pruning Back the Branches


With the release of SQL Server 2016 RC2, the RTM version must surely be nearly upon us. And certainly it has to be one of the most antcipated versions of SQL for some time? Now, I’m not one to drink the Kool-Aid on anything and everything, but I read a great post about SQL Server 2016 and the build/deployment process and how it has changed within the SQL Server Team. The most surprising aspect about this post was that the SQL Server code is kept in one branch, and that Azure SQL is deployed directly from this branch. And it got me thinking about branching strategies.

I’ve always advocated a dev/main/release process, but I’ll admit this has weaknesses, not least that testing will usually only take place properly in one branch, and that bugs found in one branch may not find there way “back” or “forward”, but to go with one branch means that you are forced to keep the quality at production-code quality and make use of feature switches. Certainly it’s an ambitious way of working, and Microsoft’s ALM documentation suggests that no branches is reserved for smaller teams, but surely if the SQL team at Microsoft are able to do it then certainly it’s a branching strategy worth considering?