Visual Studio 2008 and SQL Server 2005 Business Intelligence Development Studio

As soon as Visual Studio 2008 went RTM I installed it and removed Visual Studio 2005 from my system. As you might know VS2008’s new multi-targeting feature can target .NET Framework 2.0, 3.0 and 3.5 and should be fully backwards compatible with VS2005, so in theory there shouldn’t be any need for keeping VS2005 around*.

However, today I encountered an unexpected situation where I did need VS2005. I tried to launch the SQL Server 2005 Business Intelligence Studio, which failed miserably… As you may know Business Intelligence Studio makes use of the VS2005 IDE (it uses either an existing “normal” Visual Studio installation or it installs the Visual Studio Premier Partner Edition). I knew this, but I had expected it to somehow automatically (or magically :-)) switch to the VS2008 IDE, which ofcourse it did not.

Unwilling to re-install SQL Server 2005 I searched the internet for a solution to this problem and stumbled on a thread on the MSDN forums discussing this exact same issue. It contains an interesting reply by Microsoft employee Dan Jones. There he explains a way to install the VS2005 files need without the need for re-installing SQL Server 2005. Here’s the trick:

  1. Go to the location for SQL Server setup and run .ToolsSetupvs_setup.exe. This will install the VS Shell.
  2. Repair the Business Intelligence Studio installation by running the following command from the command line from the .Tools directory (note: this should be typed on one line):
    start /wait setup.exe /qb REINSTALL=SQL_WarehouseDevWorkbench 
    REINSTALLMODE=OMUS

I hope this helps some of you facing this same issue.

* In practice I recommend you still keep VS2005 installed, especially when doing team development. If you open a VS2005 solution in VS2008, it will ask you to convert existing solution files to the new VS2008 format. Once converted, these updated solution files cannot be used in VS2005 anymore.I actually asked Scott Guthrie a question about this on his blog and even got a reply from him. Here’s what he had to say (for the original reply search the comments on this blog posting):

Hi Leon,

> Hey Scott, I noticed VS2008 wants to
> convert my existing VS2005 solutions.
> Why? The problem is that the converted
> solutions cannot be opened in VS2005 anymore,
> which some of my team members still use. I
> thought VS2008’s multi-targeting support didn’t
> require me to have VS2005 installed anymore,
> but now I still have to install them side-by-side.

VS 2008 allows you to target .NET 2.0 projects, but does make some changes to your solution file (that prevents it from being opened with VS 2005). What you can do, though, is maintain two solution files that point to the same projects and have them work with both VS 2005 and VS 2008.

Here are some blog posts that cover this more:

www.west-wind.com/…/122975.aspx

stevenharman.net/…/multi-targeting-vs2005-and-vs2008-web-application-projects-a-gotcha.aspx

codebetter.com/…/enabling-team-development-with-vs2008-2005-mix.aspx

Hope this helps,

Scott

Yeah Scott, it did!

Posted on December 19, 2007, in .net, developing, microsoft and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. I hope Microsoft will release an update for BIDS, so we can really get rid of VS2005. On the other hand, SQL Server 2008 is about to be released, isn’t it? That one will probably use VS2008 out of the box.

  2. Screetch, I haven’t yet encountered an official statement of Microsoft about this. You could be right that they aren’t going to fix this because SQL Server 2008 is coming out soon.

  3. Leon, thanks for warning me!

  4. Thanks for the info. And it was a great read too!

  5. I too try to install sql 2005 on a visual studio 2008 machine
    The funny thing I am getting a copy of vs 2005 (does not work)
    along with business intelligence development studio
    I spent over a month looking into all the problems of installing
    sql 2005 on vista vs 2008, I am disappointed that a patch
    was not available for this problem. Now I am not sure
    if I should unistall sql 2005 or just try running this solution….

  6. Found this page on MSDN that discusses the VS2008 version:

    http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms173767.aspx

    Looks like it can be installed from the SQL 2008 DVD.

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