Thursday, March 10, 2011

Visual Studio 2010 Service Pack 1 with support for SQL Server Compact 4.0 released

Visual Studio 2010 SP1 is now available to MSDN subscribers, and includes support for managing SQL Server Compact 4.0 databases in Server Explorer. Notice that you must download the SQL Server Compact tools in order to enable the new provider via Web Platform installer, as I blogged about earlier.

UPDATE: The SQL Server Compact team has posted a blog about the new tools support in SP1, including
- Server Explorer and Query Designer
- Transact-SQL Editor (for VS Premium and higher users)
- Designers in the VB and C# ASP.NET Web application or web site projects
- Click once deployment

Interesting tidbits from the readme:

2.1.4. Visual Studio must be restarted after Visual Studio 2010 SP1 tooling for SQL Server Compact (Compact) 4.0 is installed

When a project that contains a Compact 4.0 .sdf file is opened and neither Compact nor Visual Studio Tools for SQL Server Compact 4.0 (Tools for Compact) is installed, Visual Studio 2010 SP1 asks whether the user wants to install the missing component. If the user says "yes," Web Platform Installer downloads and installs either Compact or Tools for Compact.  However, if the user then tries to open the .sdf file, an "unknown error" occurs because Tools for Compact 3.5 is already loaded and it cannot be unloaded and replaced by Tools for Compact 4.0 until Visual Studio is restarted.

To resolve this issue:

Restart Visual Studio after you install the SQL Server Compact 4.0 tooling.

And from the KB article:

SQL Server CE 4 support

Visual Studio 2010 SP1 enables you to manage Microsoft SQL Server Compact 4.0 SDF files in Solution Explorer and in Server Explorer in the context of web projects. Additionally, Visual Studio 2010 SP1 enables you to use SQL Server Compact 4.0 together with the Microsoft ASP.NET Web Forms in a SQL data source control.
Note SQL Server Compact 4.0 is not included in Visual Studio 2010 SP1, and you must download it separately. For more information, visit the following blog:

VS 2010 SP1 and SQL CE (

Web PI integration

Support for the Microsoft Web Platform Installer (PI) is added in Visual Studio 2010 SP1 as follows:
  • A new toolbar is added that allows for quick access to start the latest version of Web PI. Additionally, if the Web PI was not installed, it is downloaded first.
  • When you open web projects that use IIS 7.5 Express, SQL Server Compact 4.0, or ASP.NET Razor syntax, a dialog box appears that offers to download and install these components by using Web PI if the components are not already installed.

Deployable dependencies

Some new technology components that are added in Visual Studio 2010 SP1 can be bin-deployed together with an application. Then, you can use the components even when you deploy the application to a server on which those components are not installed. A new dialog box is added in Visual Studio 2010 SP1 that makes it easier to add these deployable dependencies to the web project. To access the dialog box, right-click the project in Solution Explorer, and then select Add Deployable Dependencies. The following components are supported:
  • ASP.NET Web Pages that use Razor Syntax
  • SQL Server Compact 4.0
For more information, visit the following blogs:

BIN Deploying ASP.NET MVC 3 with Razor to a Windows Server without MVC installed (
How to Bin Deploy SQL Compact Edition 4.0 and Razor web projects (


        NeoGeo said...

        Why verion 4 of sql ce provides no replication while previous version can? or MS is planning to roll out that in future release?

        ErikEJ said...

        NeoGeo: Who knows??