Copy Databases to Other Servers

Applies to: SQL Server

It is sometimes useful to copy a database from one computer to another, whether for testing, checking consistency, developing software, running reports, creating a mirror database, or, possibly, to make the database available to remote-branch operations.

There are several ways to copy a database:

  • Using the Copy Database Wizard

    You can use the Copy Database Wizard to copy or move databases between servers or to upgrade a SQL Server database to a later version. For more information, see Use the Copy Database Wizard.

  • Restoring a database backup

    To copy an entire database, you can use the BACKUP and RESTORE Transact-SQL statements. Typically, restoring a full backup of a database is used to copy the database from one computer to another for a variety of reasons. For information on using backup and restore to copy a database, see Copy Databases with Backup and Restore.


    To set up a mirror database for database mirroring, you must restore the database onto the mirror server by using RESTORE DATABASE <database_name> WITH NORECOVERY. For more information, see Prepare a Mirror Database for Mirroring (SQL Server).

  • Using the Generate Scripts Wizard to publish databases

    You can use the Generate Scripts Wizard to transfer a database from a local computer to a Web hosting provider. For more information, see Generate and Publish Scripts Wizard.