Upgrading a Configuration Manager 2012 Database From SQL 2008 to SQL 2012

By Garth Jones
One question that I often hear is, “Can I upgrade Configuration Manager’s SQL version without backing up my server?” The answer until recently was always, “No.”
To give you a bit about my background, I have worked with every version of Systems Management Server (SMS)/Configuration Manager (CM) since SMS 1.1. I always knew that you couldn’t upgrade SMS/CM without performing a site server restore, or at the very least, it was not supported by Microsoft to do it any other way.
However, that has changed!
Without boring you with all of the details, a friend of mine pointed me to a section of the docs which states that Microsoft now supports SQL upgrades on a site server without backing up CM.
Below is a link where you can read in more detail that Microsoft now supports SQL upgrades. Scroll to the very last item and expand the topic.
Please NOTE: You still can NOT upgrade the OS without performing a site restore.
Therefore, if you want to upgrade from SQL 2008 on Windows 2008 to SQL 2012 on Windows 2012 R2 on your CM site, the basic upgrade steps would still involve a backup:
· Upgrade to SQL 2012
· Backup CM12 or CM12 R2
· Build a clean Windows 2012 R2 server
· Install SQL 2012
· Install CM12 or CM12 R2 with the exact same site codes, paths, disk layouts, etc.
· Restore CM12 or CM12 R2
· You are done.

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