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How to migrate from Adlib CBF to Adlib SQL Server Express

If your Adlib application is still working with Adlib CBF databases (Adlib's proprietary format) and you wish to transfer those databases to a SQL Express database, this option is available to you if you have an Adlib maintenance contract. You can do this migration yourself, by means of the Adlib CBF2SQL tool which can be downloaded from your own MyAdlib page.
This upgrade procedure is meant for Adlib licenses up to 4 users and for standard, or only minimally adapted, Adlib applications. If your application has been changed a lot over the course of time, we kindly request you to contact our Sales department for a quote for an upgrade for customised applications.
In the general Adlib installation guide you can find all information to perform the migration yourself. Please contact our helpdesk if you have any questions.

So to perform the migration to SQL Express, Adlib has made the CBF2SQL tool available. As mentioned, this tool can be downloaded from your personal page on MyAdlib.
Before using CBF2SQL you will need to:

  • download Microsoft SQL Server Express and install it on your system (see the Adlib installation guide for more information about this);
  • make a backup of your entire Adlib Software folder and secure it. Especially the \data folder is important because the .cbf files in that folder currently contain all your data. After you migrate the data, you can't use those files anymore. However, if the migration process fails unexpectedly, for whatever reason, you can use the backup to quickly restore your old situation.

Installing Microsoft SQL Server Express

Performing a standard implementation of MS SQL Server Express is straightforward. The steps which are to be followed are explained in detail in the Appendix of the Adlib Installation Guide. During the installation process we recommend to register all relevant information, since this information will be needed during the conversion from CBF to SQL. In the table below you will find the relevant information (example values have been filled in):

Step Setting Value (examples)
8 Named Instance MSSQLEXPRESS
9 Collation Latin1_General_CI_AI
10 SQL Server system administrator password AdlibSQL01
12 Server name MYPC\MSSQLEXPRESS
13 Database name ADLIBSQLDB
14 Login name ADLIBSQLUSER
  SQL Server authentication password AdlibDB01

Migration from CBF to SQL

When you have performed the steps explained in the Appendix of the Adlib installation guide, you can then use the CBF2SQL tool to migrate the CBF data to the newly created database in SQL Server Express. You will find a detailed explanation of the steps to be executed in Chapter 5 of said installation guide.

Logging and backups

Since your data is now being stored in a different way, you’ll have to reconsider how to secure it by means of backups and logging. If the system on which SQL Server Express is located is ever lost, it is important to have stored a recent backup elsewhere, as is an up to date logging file containing all changes since the last backup. To start with, you’ll have to use SQL logging from now on. Therefore use Adlib Designer to check if you had ever set a Logging file in your .inf files (on the Database properties tab): if so, then empty that option in all .inf files. Subsequently see chapter 6.6 in the installation guide for extensive information about setting up the new way of logging and making backups.