SQL Server collation requirements, Azure DevOps Server

Azure DevOps Server 2019 | TFS 2018 | TFS 2017 | TFS 2015 | TFS 2013

Note: Azure DevOps Server was previously named Visual Studio Team Foundation Server.

When you install SQL Server, consider two factors regarding collation settings that could affect your Azure DevOps Server deployment:

  • Requirements for Azure DevOps Server 
  • All databases in all instances of SQL Server used by your Azure DevOps Server deployment must have the same collation settings.

You can set collation settings for the Database Engine and SQL Server Analysis Services. Collation settings include character set, sort order, and other locale-specific settings, that are fundamental to the structure and function of SQL Server databases. You cannot change these settings after installation.

Requirements

To work with Azure DevOps Server, the collation settings for SQL Server must be accent sensitive, case insensitive, and not binary. If multiple SQL Servers are running an instance of Database Engine or SQL Server Analysis Services for Azure DevOps Server, the collation settings must be the same across all these servers.

SQL Server bases the default collation settings on the locale of your operating system. The default setting for U.S. English and most other locales often meets the requirements for Azure DevOps Server. However, those settings might not support all of the data that your organization must store in Azure DevOps Server. In that case, find a setting that supports your data and is accent sensitive, case insensitive, and not binary.

If you install Database Engine Services or Analysis Services, you can change collation settings on the Server Configuration page, by selecting the Collation tab and then selecting Customize. You may want to specify an option under Windows collation designator and sort order. For example, you can specify Latin1_General, and select the AS checkbox, if you require support for additional characters.

For most other locales, the default setting is an option under Windows collation designator and sort order. Make sure that the settings match the requirements for Azure DevOps Server. To change this setting, specify the option that is named for your locale with "_100" after it, where possible. For example, you can use Japanese_100 collation if you use Unicode CJK Extension A characters or Unicode surrogates in the following ways:

  • Names of objects, such as queries or projects, in Azure DevOps
  • Files or paths that are checked into the version control system
  • Any work item field that is used for searches.

To avoid problems with double-width or hiragana/katakana-equivalent characters, you should select the check boxes to enable Kana and width sensitivity when you install SQL Server.

For more information, see Collation settings in Setup.

Full-Text search queries and collation settings

To support full-text search queries, the collation settings of the SQL Server database should correspond to a language that has a word breaker registered with SQL Server. If you use an unsupported language, you could receive unexpected results when you run a work item query that specifies the Contains or Contains Words operators with text strings.

To learn more, see the following articles: