Moving Data When populating tables by inserting data, you will discover that data can come from various sources. One of these sources could be an application where you would use INSERT, UPDATE, and DELETE statements to populate and manipulate the data you store in a SQL Server database.
Import Data You can import data using the following: –BULK INSERT statements –The bcp utility –Data transformations using SSIS –The import/export wizard –Copy database wizard –Detaching/attaching databases –Backup/restore databases –Bulk insert XML data
BULK INSERT A BULK INSERT statement loads a data file into the database using a user-specified format, without forcing the execution of the constraints defined on the destination object.
bcp Utility The bcp utility, a command-line tool, is commonly used for importing and exporting data by performing bulk imports/exports of text data. The utility allows you to do the following: –You can bulk export data from a table to a file. –You can bulk export data from a query to a file. –You can bulk import data into SQL Server. –You can create format files.
SSIS In SQL Server 2000 a commonly used tool to import and export data was the SQL Server 2000 DTS Wizard. Starting with SQL Server 2005, SQL Server provides a new extract, transfer, and load (ETL) platform: SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS). With SSIS you have the ability to import and export data from heterogeneous sources to various destinations. The toolset provides you with extensive data transformations.
Import and Export Wizard The SQL Server Import and Export Wizard offers the simplest method to create the Microsoft SQL Server Integration Services package that copies data from a source to a destination. The wizard can access a variety of data sources, including: –SQL Server –Flat files –Access –Excel –Other OLE DB providers
Copying Databases One of the handiest tools in the SQL Server arsenal is the Copy Database Wizard.
Bulk-Inserting XML Data You can bulk-insert data to import large amounts of data in SQL Server using T-SQL syntax. You can accomplish this by using an OPENROWSET function or a BULK INSERT statement.
Bulk-Logged Recovery Model Choosing a Full database recovery model would have a big impact on the transaction log when performing BULK INSERT statements. To have less impact on the transaction log, you can implement the Bulk-Logged recovery model. In contrast to the Full recovery model, the Bulk- Logged model logs bulk operations in a minimal mode. This allows the Bulk-Logged model to protect against media failures, provide the best performance, and use the least log space.
Summary In this lesson you learned how to work with relational data in terms of importing and exporting data. An interesting capability of SQL Server is the various methods you can use to bulk-import or even export data to the file system using command-line utilities such as bcp or the BULK INSERT statement.
Summary SSIS is the ETL tool you use to perform advanced data migrations and specify data workflows with custom scripting and transformations. The power of this tool is that you can use heterogeneous data sources and destinations.
Summary for Certification Examination Be able to run the bcp utility. The bcp utility has several options, including creating a format file and specifying your input or output result based on a table or a query. It is important to be able to identify the correct syntax to use to perform various bcp statements.
Summary for Certification Examination Know how to import and export data. You need to have a good understanding of how to import and export data by using BULK INSERT statements or even by using the OPENROWSET function. You also can use advanced ETL features with SSIS, and you need to be able to identify which tool to use for each purpose.