Importing SQL Server 2005 Registered Servers to SQL Server 2008

The team here discovered something that I thought we should share. I'll get a Knowledge Base (KB) article out soon so that you have something more "official", but I wanted to get this out as soon as I could.

A user wrote us and said that when he tried to import his registered servers from SQL Server 2005 using the "Import" feature in SQL Server 2008, SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) gave him an error.

When we dug into this, we found that when we added support for the new "Central Management Servers" node, we needed a new XML file format for the servers so that they could be differentiated from the other nodes in SSMS. That's a good thing.

We also made sure that if you upgrade the SQL Server 2005 tools to SQL Server 2008, then you will be prompted to migrate all of the old data on the first launch of SSMS. That's also good. So if you just upgrade you're fine.

What *isn't* good is that the import function, which is another set of code entirely, didn't get the change. This means if you use the "Import" feature in SQL Server 2008 and point it at the list of servers you exported from SQL Server 2005 using the "Export" feature, you'll get this error. Argh!

But there is a solution:

  1. On the SQL Server 2005 system, shut down SSMS and copy out the files in this location: “%appdata%\Microsoft\Microsoft SQL Server\90\Tools\Shell\RegSrvr.xml
  2. Now copy those files to the same location when you installed SQL Server 2008.
  3. Open SSMS 2008 and right-click Local Server Groups  in the Registered Servers window
  4. Choose Tasks | Previously Registered Servers

Sorry about that - we've got a bug in for this.