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Tip: Use ALTER DATABASE to Move Databases

You can use the ALTER DATABASE statement to move any system or user-defined database files except for Resource database files.To move files, you specify the cur¬rent logical name of the file and the new file path, which includes the new file name.You can move only one file at a time in this manner.

To move data or log files to a new location, follow these steps:

1. Get the logical name of the data and log files associated with the database by typing the following:
USE master 
SELECT name, physical_name 
FROM sys.master_files 
WHERE database_id = DB_ID("Personnel"); 
2. Take the database you want to work with offline by typing these commands:
ALTER DATABASE Personnel 
SET offline 
GO
3. Move one file at a time to the new location by typing the following:
ALTER DATABASE Personnel 
MODIFY FILE ( NAME = Personnel_Data, FILENAME = 
"C:\Data\Personnel_Data.mdf") 
GO 
4. Repeat the previous step to move other data and log files.

5. Put the database online by typing the following commands:
ALTER DATABASE Personnel 
SET online 
GO 


You can verify the change or changes by typing this:
USE master 
SELECT name, physical_name 
FROM sys.master_files 
WHERE database_id = DB_ID("Personnel");


You can also move full-text catalogs by their logical name. But note that when you specify the new catalog location, you specify only new_path rather than new_path/file_name.To move a full-text catalog file to a new location, follow these steps:

1. Take the database you want to work with offline by typing the following:
ALTER DATABASE database_name 
SET offline 
GO 
2. Move one file at a time to the new location by typing these commands:
ALTER DATABASE database_name 
MODIFY FILE ( NAME = logical_name, FILENAME = "new_path". 
GO 
3. Repeat the previous step to move other full-text catalog files as necessary.

4. Put the database online by typing the following:
ALTER DATABASE database_name 
SET online 
GO

For more on using ALTER DATABASE, see the tip Change Settings with ALTER DATABASE in SQL Server 2008.


From the Microsoft Press book Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Administrator’s Pocket Consultant, Second Edition by William R. Stanek.



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