SQL Server 2012, SQL Express 2012 LocalDB, Sync Framework, Sync Framework v4 and SQL Azure Data Sync

Apologies for the blog post title, I just couldn’t find a better way to summarize what this post is so I just listed all the products that this post is all about.

I noticed that over the last couple of weeks, there’s a few search engine referrals to this blog having ‘sql 2012 localdb sync, ‘sql server 2012 synchronizing data’, ‘sync framework and localdb’, ‘sync framework 4 2012’, ‘azure data sync 2012’  and some other variations.

(And yes, I do look at the search terms that are directed to this blog to give me an idea of what people are looking for and what to blog about, if and when I have time.)

I think its either people are looking for information if there is something new in either Sync Framework or SQL Azure Data Sync in relation to the SQL 2012 release or if the current Sync Framework and SQL Azure Data Sync releases will work with SQL 2012.

So I thought I’d write a quick blog about what I know as far as these technologies are concerned.

Sync Framework, SQL Azure Data Sync and SQL 2012

First, the bad news.

There is no new release of Sync Framework or SQL Azure Data Sync specifically for SQL 2012. And neither is there something new in SQL 2012 in relation to Sync Framework or SQL Azure Data Sync.

In addition, while the SQL 2012 literature for “Cloud On Your Terms/Extend Any Data, Anywhere” (see: http://www.microsoft.com/sqlserver/en/us/product-info/overview-capabilities.aspx and http://www.microsoft.com/sqlserver/en/us/solutions-technologies/hybrid-It.aspx)  sounds like SQL Azure Data Sync is part of SQL 2012, it is not. SQL Azure Data Sync is a completely separate product/release outside of SQL 2012.

Now, the good news.

Both current  Sync Framework and SQL Azure Data Sync releases works with SQL 2012. (SQL Azure Data Sync is built  on top of Sync Framework, so if it works in Sync Framework, it will most likely work with SQL Azure Data Sync.)

In fact, both service also works with the new SQL variant called SQL Express LocalDB (see: Sync Framework and SQL Express 2012 LocalDB  and SQL Azure Data Sync Service, SQL Express and SQL Express 2012 LocalDB). So you can continue to use Sync Framework’s SqlSyncProvider or use the Visual Studio Local Database Cache Wizard to sync with SQL 2012.

Having said that, while they both work with SQL 2012, it also means you still have the same limitations that you have with Sync Framework and SQL Azure Data Sync (e.g., limited support for the newer data types like spatial, etc…)  and neither of them can take advantage of the newer features in the SQL 2012 release.

Sync Framework v4

And one last thing, there is no Sync Framework v4.0.

What used to be the CTP 4.0 was released instead as the Sync Framework Toolkit (see: Sync Fx v4 Postponed and Sync Framework Toolkit now available for download). So download the Sync Framework Toolkit, not the CTP!

And if you’re planning of upgrading to the Sync Framework Toolkit thinking that since it used be known as a supposed to be 4.0 release it must be the latest version, let me clarify one more thing: Sync Framework Toolkit is not an upgrade to Sync Framework 2.1. Don’t be confused by the higher version number.

Sync Framework Toolkit is actually built on top of Sync Framework 2.1. It addresses a different use case. The  toolkit is primarily for clients that cannot have the full Sync Framework installation. It allows other Microsoft platforms to be used for offline clients such as Silverlight, Windows Phone 7, and Windows Mobile; in addition, non-Microsoft platforms such as iPhone, Android, and Blackberry can be utilized as well as HTML5. The server side sync service remains on v2.1

I hope this help clarify the questions.




One comment

  1. […] Additional Information: Data Security, SQL Server 2012, SQL Express 2012 LocalDB, Sync Framework, Sync Framework v4 and SQL Azure Data Sync […]

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