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Simplified SQL Azure Development? Nope...

SQL Azure developers are at a disadvantage compared to Windows Azure coders because of a lack of desktop emulators, a Microsoft blog indicated.

The Windows Azure SDK includes emulators that run on your PC so you don't have to subscribe to the online service to code against it, noted Buck Woody in an earlier posting. Yesterday he said that posting brought up the question of whether there was such a thing for SQL Azure.

"The short answer is that there isn't one," Woody said in a Carpe Datum blog posting titled "Where is the SQL Azure Development Environment." (I realize that, being an editor, I'm overly picky about such things, but isn't that headline screaming for a closing question mark?)

He explains how to develop with SQL Azure without emulators ("you can simply treat it as another edition of SQL Server") and it doesn't sound that onerous, but I wonder about the scripting part: "you can script out the database when you're done as a SQL Azure script." Things may well have improved since I tried a SQL Server-to-SQL Azure database conversion script in the early days of the cloud-based offering, but I was pulling my hair out having to make all kinds of manual changes.

Anyway, Woody concluded:

"Will all this change? Will SSMS, 'Data Dude' and other tools change to include SQL Azure? Well, I don't have a specific roadmap for those tools, but we're making big investments on Windows Azure and SQL Azure, so I can say that as time goes on, it will get easier."

What do you think? Are you database guys getting the short shrift, or is it no big deal? Please comment here or drop me a line.

Posted by David Ramel on 02/04/2011 at 1:15 PM


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