SQL Azure and the DAC Pac

WallWhen last we left our intrepid hero he had successfully deployed to SQL Azure using the Data-Tier Application Package, a DAC pac. It was easy and I had a database in place in nothing flat. There really weren’t any issues worth mentioning. I wasn’t crazy about the fact that unless I had Visual Studio 2010 I couldn’t edit the Data-Tier apps or get them into source control, but there you.

So, assuming this is a real production application, I’ve just realized that I need to get a new procedure into my database. If I just got and run the script to create the procedure then I’ll be breaking the link between my database and the DAC pac (and yes, I still enjoy saying that knowing that blood pressure is rising with each utterance), which would be bad. Instead, I need to create an updated DAC pac and then upgrade the existing deployment. There’s a bunch of information on how to do this right in the Books Online so it shouldn’t be too hard.

Then, I right click on my DAC pac on my SQL Azure database and here’s my menu:


Hmm… But I’ve been testing DAC pacs on my local machine and when I right click on one of my tests there I get this menu:


What’s missing? And no, it’s not PowerShell for crying out loud. No Upgrade Data-tier Application menu choice on SQL Azure.

But, I thought I was supposed to deploy from the DAC pac? Well, yes, you’re supposed to deploy, but you shouldn’t need to upgrade, at least not on SQL Azure. And yes, all the words, especially the four letter ones, that just went through your head have been going through mine. You can’t deploy changes to a SQL Azure using a DAC pac.

But, Microsoft is aware of the issue with the DAC pac. I don’t know if they’re working on making it functional in SQL Azure, they may well be. But, they are working on the SQL Azure Migration Wizard. More on that in our next installment. Same Azure-Time. Same Azure-Channel.

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