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[How-To] Change Server Collation in SQL Server 2008

Changing the default collation for an instance of SQL Server can be a complex operation and involves the following steps:

  • Make sure you have all the information or scripts needed to re-create your user databases and all the objects in them.
  • Export all your data using a tool such as the bcp Utility. For more information, see Importing and Exporting Bulk Data.
  • Drop all the user databases.
  • Rebuild the master database specifying the new collation in the SQLCOLLATION property of the setup command. For example:

setup.exe /QUIET /ACTION=REBUILDDATABASE /INSTANCENAME=SQLEXPRESS
/SQLSYSADMINACCOUNTS=Administrator /SAPWD=******** /SQLCOLLATION=Slovak_CI_AS

  • Create all the databases and all the objects in them.
  • Import all your data.

For more information, see Rebuilding System Databases.

Hint: I have tried all the suggested methods to overcome Microsoft SQL Server, Error: 5123.  I am going from 2005 to 2008.  I was finally able to attach my DBs when I signed into SQL via Windows Authentication rather than SQL Authentication.  Once attached I am now back using SA.

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2 thoughts on “[How-To] Change Server Collation in SQL Server 2008

  1. Dobry den,

    My sme boli spolu na workshope MS SQL 2008 v dnoch 30.3.-.1.4.2011 v New Horizont Bratislava, v Apollo Business Centre.

    Nasla som Vas nahodou na nete, tak Vas touto cestou pozdravujem.

    Anna Sunova

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