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The Best Way to Create a New Target Database

Creating a new target database is not something that the average DBA does every day. For this reason, it’s a procedure that may pose some challenges to new team members as well as those with more experience. To assist the database professionals tasked with setting up a new target database, IDERA has posted a series of instructive videos regarding this subject.

In this post, we will provide an overview of the videos’ content and talk about the factors that go into a successful database migration. The videos walk users through the process of creating a new target database and provides extensive screenshots that will help those new to the tool quickly navigate the interface.

Performing a Successful Data Migration

Creating a new target database is not something that your database team does just because it sounds interesting. There is usually a data migration project that requires the new target to be set up. Here are some general tips for successful data or database migration.

  • Budget for the expert help or tools necessary to perform the migration. In cases where the team is very inexperienced at migrations, hiring expert consultants may be in order.

  • Plan the strategy thoroughly before starting the process. Schedules need to be set up, backup and replication settings agreed upon, and the general type of migration needs to be chosen. Some organizations may choose a “Big Bang” style of migration where the process is scheduled to complete in a set time window. A “trickle” migration breaks the process into phases that make it more complex but presents more testing opportunities and less downtime.

  • Engage the end-users to determine what they are looking for in the new database and to keep them apprised of the plan as it unfolds.

  • Audit the database for issues like unused fields and obsolete records that do not need to be migrated. This will inform changes that need to be made when creating the new target.

  • Backup the source data before it is moved. This is basic data security 101 and should be the regular practice followed before any procedures that touch data resources. It’s always better to have too many backups than to have to explain why you don’t have any when disaster strikes.

  • Perform the move and validate the data before performing the final testing and shutdown of the source.

Adhering to these guidelines gives your team a much greater chance of successful database migration.

Steps to Create a New Target Database

The tool highlighted in the videos is IDERA’s ER/Studio Data Architect. Using this application, users are walked through the steps used to prepare for successful database migration. Specifically, the videos look at these aspects of the procedure:

  • Consolidating databases;
  • Documenting a database;
  • Reverse engineering a database;
  • Documenting a database with a logical model;
  • Comparing models and making design decisions;
  • Creating a new target database;
  • Designing data movement (ETL).

The combination of the functionality offered by ER/Studio and the videos explaining how to use it efficiently gives database teams the tools and knowledge required when creating a new target database and migrating from a legacy platform. It’s just up to the team to use these elements to their advantage.

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