Monday, May 5, 2014

SqlTableZip - a quick walkthough

So, over the past few weeks, since the announcement - SqlTableZip has been downloaded many times and I've been getting some positive feedback (thanks to that!).

While it's still in beta, I wanted to build a quick step-by-step walk-through, which may change over time, but should give a pretty decent idea of how to use SqlTableZip.

Let's begin.

When running the app, you get a simple screen, on which the upper part is for connection settings (i.e. where am I backing up from and/or restoring to) and the lower part of the actual backup/restore actions.

After choosing the connection (either by typing in the required fields *or* by selecting a server from the shared repository - which is shown a bit further down the walk-through), all you need to do is write/paste your query of what you need to backup.
This may be a complete table (i.e. SELECT * FROM Something) or any other more complex query.

Next, we set the "Backup To" location and click "Backup"

This query returned 18,798 rows, and was completed after less than 1 second (0.78ms, as can be seen on the bottom-right corner).

That's it-  the backup part is complete. SqlTableZip has created a .SQZ file containing all the relevant data needed to have this file restored anywhere.
At this point, you're free to copy this file, send it anywhere or just "save it for later".

* * *
Now, let's perform the Restore operation;

Let's assume this happens a bit later, and SqlTableZip is not running.
Locating the backup location shows me the .Sqz file along with the App's icon:

This file is compressed. Just for comparison - saving the same data as .csv will be x3 times bigger and will not even contain the schema definitions, delimiters etc...

Now, let's simply double-click the file. This takes us to the restore tab.

The "Restore Table Name" defaults to the file name, however this can be changed to everything.
Needless to say, the target connection can also change.

Again, connection settings can be changed, or, we can always click the "Choose from Repository" to launch our shared repository component - and easy share-able server list, with nested groups and other powerful features.

OK, now let's click "Restore"

Again, less than 1 second (0.59ms) and the data is there.

Comparing the results in Management Studio shows the same results -

So, there you have it - a simple & intuitive way to a table/query-level Backup & Restore.
No need to struggle with csv/tsv/delimiters/data types/size issues and other common concerns in such tasks.

Ready to give it a shot? head over to