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Odd Database Project issue with VS 2010

Recently I stumbled upon really weird issue with VS 2010. We have bunch of database projects created in VS 2010 which are part of our regular development build. As part of my task, I was trying to automate deployment of these database projects using PowerShell and came across really really strange issue that I have never seen before.

I was simply checking out database project from our source control and using MSBUILD (aka MSFT Build Engine) to build and deploy the database project to my test SQL Server instances. Ideally what it does is it allows me to deploy that database at instance that I wish with database name of my selection. But with my surprise when I built and tried to deploy the project I was welcomed with this error …

 

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Error Deploy01234: The target database schema provider could not be determined. Deployment cannot continue.

This was the error that I was getting when i was trying to deploy our database project to one of our test system in a batch script. To me it was a bit surprise because I had done same process many times in past and it has worked just fine. But today I spent hefty amount of time to resolve this issue. Whole error that I was getting was  something like below,

 

—— Deploy started: Project: Database, Configuration: Debug Any CPU ——

C:\Program Files\MSBuild\Microsoft\VisualStudio\v10.0\TeamData\Microsoft.Data.Schema.TSqlTasks.targets(120,5): Error Deploy01234: The target database schema provider could not be determined.  Deployment cannot continue.

   Done executing task “SqlDeployTask” — FAILED.

  Done building target “DspDeploy” in project “TheDatabase.dbproj” — FAILED.

Done executing task “CallTarget” — FAILED.

Done building target “DBDeploy” in project “TheDatabase.dbproj” — FAILED.

Done building project “TheDatabase.dbproj” — FAILED.

Build FAILED.