SQL Copy Table from One Database to Another – Best 4 Ways

Written By Andrew Jackson
Anuraag Singh
Approved By Anuraag Singh
Published On December 15th, 2023
Reading Time 10 Minutes Reading

copy all data from one database to another SQL Server

SQL copy table from one database to another is indeed a tough task for users without having the right technical knowledge. We have received several queries from users struggling form the same issue. Well, this article is all about this task which we can call database table migration, copy, or transfer to another DB. We are going to mention both manual & automated solutions in 4 total ways.

MS SQL Server is one of the most widely used RDBMS in the world. It stored the data in a structured way that too in a tabular form. Now, the database does not only have tables. It also consists of triggers, stored procedures, views, rules, indexes, etc. The automated solution can copy all data from one database to another SQL Server or the same server with a different database. Therefore, along with tables, it covers all other data as well. However, the manual methods are strictly restricted to tables.

Let’s learn about the table & its data structure first, then only we can proceed ahead with a better understanding.

All About MS SQL Server Table & Data

A table is the most crucial element of an RDBMS (MS SQL) among all data objects. It stores the data using rows & columns in such a way that makes organizing & extracting easier for the users. There are a few significant components of a table mentioned below to get a deep insight into it. This way, users can learn how to execute SQL Server copy table from one database to another task without hassles.

  • Table Name – A database can have multiple tables & each table must have a unique name as well to get identified.
  • Columns – A column field specifies the type of data stored in that. It can be numerical data, text data, etc.
  • Rows – Rows are the actual data fields under a column holding a particular data information with a certain value.
  • Data Type – Data type refers to the kind of data that users are storing in the table. It can be VARCHAR, INT, DATE, etc.
  • Primary Key – Each table consist of one or more column that represents a unique value for each row not repeating in the entire table.
  • Foreign Key – When a primary key is used to establish a connection in any other table or database, it becomes a foreign key.
  • Constraints – The rules that restrict users from entering a value in a column, or row are known as the constraints that need to be followed strictly to avoid errors.
  • Indexes – Indexes make retrieving the data from a table easier than the manual query insertion method. 

SQL Copy Table from One Database to Another Manually

Now, we have a total of three manual solutions that we’re going to discuss first. Otherwise, in total, we have four solutions including the automated one. Then only, we will proceed further to the automated solution. The manual solutions do not need any third-party software to get the task done. Although there might be several challenges present that users have to deal with. These methods are:

Let’s look at these methods one after another.

1. Copy SQL Table to Another Database with SELECT INTO Method

This SELECT INTO query method uses the manaul command line interface to transfer our table data to the destination database. Therefore, before we start, let’s assume our source database name is SourceDB1 & destination database name is DestDB2. Also, the table name here is denoted as TestTable with Computer schema for easier understanding.

Here, we’re going to use the SELECT INTO command to execute the entire query of copying all data. The syntax will look like this:

SELECT * INTO DestinationDB.dbo.tablename from SourceDB.dbo.SourceTable

The final command will look like this:

SELECT * INTO DestDB2. Computer.TestTable from SourceDB1. Computer.TestTable

Now, let’s understand what this command does. It basically creates the exact same table (empty) in the destination database first. After the creation of the table, the system will copy the data from the source to the destination table with a smooth transition.

Note: This command only works for table, it can not transfer other data objects like triggers, views, stored procedures, etc.

2. Export/Import Wizard Using SSMS

Learning how to copy table from one database to another here do not require manual commands. Putting it simply, it uses the SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) to get the work done. Rather than transferring or copying, here, the users can import the data from one place to another.

Follow the steps mentioned below carefully to transfer data from one database to another SQL Server using a query for a table.

  1. Open the SSMS & Connect to the SQL Server instance.
  2. Right-Click on the Source DB, Go to Tasks >> Hit Export Data option.
  3. Under the Import/Export wizard & Click on Next button.
  4. Enter Data Source, Server Name and Choose authentication type & the source database. Click Next.
  5. Enter the Destination, Server Name, authentication type and destination database then Click on Next.
  6. Select ‘Copy data from one or more tables or views’ option & Hit Next.
  7. Select the Tables from the Source Database, Click on Next.
  8. Click Next to move further & Hit the Finish button to end.
  9. Analyze the results with the expectations from the status report generated.

Note: Although this method can help users in SQL Server copy table from one database to another different server using query but surely but fails in keys & indexes.

3. The Generating Scripts Method

The generating scripts method is a bit tricky but it does support tables as well as stored procedures, keys, constraints, views, triggers, etc. Moreover, it also uses the MS SSMS platform to execute the entire task. Let’s understand this method in detail & know how to generate scripts to get desired results.

  1. Open the SSMS and quickly Connect with the SQL Server instance.
  2. Choose Source DB & Hit a Right-click, Click Tasks & Click Generate Scripts.
  3. Under Generate and Publish Scripts, Click Objects Page, Choose Tables from Database & Hit Next.
  4. Under Set Scripting Options page, Set Path & save the generated script file.
  5. Now, Click on the Advance options to copy SQL table to another database in depth.
  6. Choose Schema as well as Data in the ‘types of data to script’ and Click on OK.
  7. Chcekout the summary window once options are selecte >> Click on Next.

How to Copy Table from One Database to Another Using Best Tool

Now, that we have covered all of the manual solutions, it’s time to look at the sure-shot automated tool that can beat all of the above-mentioned solutions. It can easily help users to eliminate all the technical challenges present in the manual methods. Moreover, this saves users time, provides an extra layer of security for the data files, & makes the process faster.

SysTools MS SQL Server Migration Tool is the industry-leading solution for users to easily copy data from one database to another SQL Server or the same server but a different DB.

Download Now Purchase Now

It comes with advanced features, filters, any many other benefits that make the task less risky & more result-oriented. Some of the amazing features of this solution are:

  • No need to transfer data from one database to another SQL Server using query.
  • Provides a user-friendly interface helping nontechnical users to a great extent.
  • Can transfer all of the data objects of an SQL server database without errors.
  • It can repair the corrupted data objects before copying them to destination.
  • Auto detects the SQL Server version & even offers the manual option too.
  • There are both Online or Offline methods are available for this task.
  • Allow users to export the data in three platforms:
    • SQL Server Database
    • SQL Server Scripts
    • CSV File Format
  • Selective migration of data is possible to .
  • SQL Server versions 2000, 2005, 2008/2008 R2, 2012, 2014, 2016, 2017, 2019, & 2022 are supported.
  • Software is compatible with MS Windows 7, 8, 10, 11, etc with Windows Server 2012, 2016, etc.

Apart from these, there are an endless number of features present in this advanced software for users. Let’s have a look at the working of this tool step by step.

4. Copy All Data from One Database to Another SQL Server Step by Step

Step-1. Install and Launch the SQL Migration Software to initiate.

launch tool

Step-2. Hit Open to Add SQL File and select Online or Offline mode.

click open

Step-3. Click on the Export option to further continue with the task.


Step-4. Choose the Destination & Data Objects(tables) here.

set destination

Step-5. Finally, Click on the Export option to complete.

Also Read: Migrate SQL Server 2012 to 2022 Version with Ease

SQL Server Copy Table From One Database to Another Major Concerns

Now, before we end this article, it’s quite crucial for us to understand the major challenges users might face in this complex operation. More importantly, these challenges will trouble users in case of using the manual solution. Being aware of these challenges in advance can help users in getting the perfect solution without any hassles.

  • Bulk Data Errors – Manual solutions often struggle with bulk data. When large data is under process, the chances of losing data due to technical errors are higher.
  • Corrupted Data Files – Corrupted files make the scenario worse. Users need to first repair the files and then only they can transfer them to their destination.
  • Data Validation Issues – To copy SQL table to another database table, users need to first modify the data according to the destination table which can be hectic.
  • Transaction Handling & Rollback – It is often a challenge for users to manage rollbacks. Therefore, such operations must be transactional.
  • Connectivity & Permission Hassles – Before the process begins, users need to provide the necessary permissions & cross verify the connectivity to the database. 
  • Schema Mapping & Consistency Issues – Different schemas of different tables are always a tough one for users. Necessary corrections are required.

Also Read: Copy SQL Server Database from One Server to Another  – Best Tutorial


Conducting the MS SQL copy table from one database to another operation is not tough for users after going through 4 different ways. Following the steps without breaking any guidelines can result in a clean output exactly as desired. Selection of the method is another crucial task for users that they should consider based on their requirements, urgency, confidentiality, etc.


Q-1. Which one is the best way to get the perfect results without any errors?

Ans: All four methods work fine but the fastest & safest method is the advanced software.

Q-2. Is it save to SQL Server copy table from one database to another different server using query method?

Ans: Yes, the manual method is safe in case users are dealing with small data. With large sized tables, there are chances of getting the errors inthe manual query mode.

Q-3. Is there any way to copy the design of table from one to another?

Ans: Yes, there is. Just follow the five simple steps:

  1. Open SSMS >> Go to Object Explorer
  2. Right Click Table >> Select Table Design
  3. Select Columns >> Hit the Copy Button
  4. Go to New table >> Click the Paste Button

Q-4. Is joining table tough?

Ans: Once users know SQL Server copy table from one database to another task, joining them is quite easy, follow the four simple steps mentioned below:

  1. Create a Database as well as table.
  2. Create another database & table now.
  3. With the SSMS to Join both the tables.
  4. Now, users can Drop the database created.

By Andrew Jackson

I am SQL DBA and SQL Server blogger too. I like to share about SQL Server and the problems related to it as well as their solution and also I do handle database related user queries, server or database maintenance, database management, etc. I love to share my knowledge with SQL Geeks.