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Migrate SQL Server to PostgreSQL



Migrate SQL Server to PostgreSQL

Migrate SQL Server to PostgreSQL

Amongst several Database Management Systems (DBMS), SQL Server is one of the most popular because of key features such as easy to learn interface and user-friendly capability. But we all know that DBMS should have a combination of powerful features that will lead to customer retention. This is the reason for the reduction in the number of users of MS SQL. Some of the disadvantages of the DBMS that should be held accountable are strict licensing policies and a high cost of ownership. Both drawbacks are not beneficial to companies that own large databases.

A good way to maneuver the high cost of ownership is to evaluate some open-source databases. A few examples of such databases are MySQL, SQLite, and PostgreSQL.


This is a database system which is both document-based and self-contained. However, these features limit its usage in the multi-user environment in lieu of large databases. The reason for these drawbacks is due to the fact that the database is only created and integrated into programs ALONE.


Compared to SQLite, this database a wider and robust coverage. Features of MySQL are point out that they belong in the class of sophisticated RDBMS. Some of the functions of the database are security, scalability, and wide storage units with various functionalities. As expected, MySQL has a few drawbacks as well which are – no support for full-text search, little or no support for parallel writes in some database engines and non-execution of full SQL standard.


This is the most advanced of the listed databases in this article. A normal RDBMS of its kind, it has a relational feature and a functionality that supports a built-in object-oriented database. For this reason, it is a great option for data integrity with heightened reliability.

By now, you should know that it is important to migrate SQL Server to PostgreSQL. But there are steps that must be taken in order of priority which are:

  •   Export table definitions in MS SQL database
  •   Convert these table definitions to PostgreSQL format
  •   Load results to Postgres database
  •   In an intermediate storage, export source SQL Server data
  •   Covert such data to the format of Postgres
  •   Load into a subsequent target database

How to export SQL Server Table Definitions

Open SQL Server Management Studio and right-click on the database to migrate. Then click on ‘Tasks, Generate Scripts’. You will find the ‘Set scripting options’, click on ‘Advanced’. Then you can either select ‘data only’ or ‘data and schema’ for ‘Types of data to script’.  This is found in the General section.

Before you proceed to the subsequent step of SQL Server to PostgreSQL migration, you have to correct the resulting script.

After concluding steps one to five in the order of priority of conversion, it is important to load finished product into the target PostgreSQL table

At this point, the finished product is in the form of a CSV file. Then, you can use the ‘COPY’ as: COPY <table name> FROM <path to CSV file> DELIMITER ‘,’ CSV;

If you receive an error message like ‘Permission denied’ when you use the ‘COPY’ command, you can try the ‘\COPY’ command.

Those steps to migrate SQL Server to PostgreSQL requires dedication and ample effort to get the job done especially because it is an advanced and complicated procedure. In addition, manual database migrations are not only time-consuming and expensive, they can lead to data loss and corruption.

To minimize this risk, Intelligent Converters company has created a software to migrate SQL Server to PostgreSQL in just a few clicks. This software product offers many benefits besides automation, scripting, and scheduling of the database migration:

  • Support both on-premises and cloud versions of MS SQL and PostgreSQL (any combination of on-prem to on-prem, on-prem to cloud, cloud to on-prem or cloud to cloud is supported)
  • Superfast conversion engine (more than 2MB per second on a modern hardware platform)
  • SSL connection for Postgres server is supported
  • Filtering data through SELECT-queries during migration is possible
  • MS SQL data can be migrated into PostgreSQL script file for those cases when there is no direct connection to the target database server

At the same time the product has a few limitations that also must be considered:

  • works on Windows platforms only
  • does not migrate stored procedures, functions and triggers (the vendor provides another solution for that purpose)

Learn about the tool to migrate SQL Server to PostgreSQL on the official page of Intelligent Converters.

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