Migrating from Microsoft SQL Server to PostgreSQL involves careful consideration of various database components. In this practical guide, we’ll dive into the specifics of migrating jobs, stored procedures, SSIS packages, and tables. We’ll also explore tools that can facilitate and streamline the migration process.

Migrating Jobs

SQL Server Agent jobs are a crucial part of MS SQL Server, automating tasks like backups, maintenance, and batch processing. PostgreSQL doesn’t have a built-in job scheduler akin to SQL Server Agent, but you can use external tools like pgAgent or cron (for Linux-based systems) to manage scheduled tasks.


  1. Document Existing Jobs: List all SQL Server Agent jobs, noting their schedules, scripts, and tasks.
  2. Recreate Jobs in pgAgent/cron: For each job, create an equivalent in pgAgent or a cron job. You may need to modify SQL scripts to comply with PostgreSQL syntax.

Migrating Stored Procedures

Stored procedures often contain complex business logic. Migrating these requires converting T-SQL code to PL/pgSQL, PostgreSQL’s procedural language.


  • SQLines: A tool that offers SQL conversion between various database languages, including T-SQL to PL/pgSQL.
  • pgAdmin: While not a direct conversion tool, pgAdmin can help test and debug converted PL/pgSQL scripts.


  1. Analyze and Document: Identify all stored procedures and understand their logic and dependencies.
  2. Manual Conversion and Testing: Use tools like SQLines for initial conversion, then manually adjust and test the PL/pgSQL code in pgAdmin for syntax and logic accuracy.

Migrating SSIS Packages

SSIS packages for ETL processes can be complex, with no direct equivalent in PostgreSQL. You might consider ETL tools that work with PostgreSQL for similar functionality.


  • Talend Open Studio: Offers ETL capabilities and can connect to PostgreSQL.
  • Pentaho Data Integration: Another powerful ETL tool that supports PostgreSQL.


  1. Evaluate SSIS Packages: Document the data sources, destinations, transformations, and logic within each SSIS package.
  2. Reimplement Logic in New ETL Tool: Using Talend or Pentaho, recreate the data workflows to mimic the SSIS packages’ processes.

Migrating Tables and Data

Migrating table schemas and data is foundational to your database migration effort. Tools are available to assist with both schema conversion and data transfer.


  • pgAdmin’s Import/Export Wizard: Facilitates basic data transfers between SQL Server and PostgreSQL.
  • Microsoft Data Migration Assistant (DMA): Helps assess and migrate database schemas.
  • AWS Schema Conversion Tool (SCT): Although designed for AWS migrations, it can assist in converting schemas from SQL Server to PostgreSQL.


  1. Schema Conversion: Use DMA or SCT to convert table schemas from SQL Server to PostgreSQL. Address any conversion issues or incompatibilities.
  2. Data Migration: With schemas in place, use pgAdmin or a custom script to transfer data. For large datasets, consider tools like pgLoader for efficient data loading.

Few more considerations

Continuous Integration and Continuous Deployment (CI/CD) for Database Changes

As you migrate and adapt your database, incorporating CI/CD practices can help manage changes more efficiently and reduce the risk of errors in production. Tools like Liquibase or Flyway can manage database version control and automate deployments across environments, ensuring consistency and facilitating rollback if necessary.

Post-Migration Optimization

After the migration, it’s crucial to focus on optimizing the PostgreSQL environment:

  • Query Optimization: Analyze query performance using tools like EXPLAIN in PostgreSQL. Optimize queries based on the execution plans and indexes.
  • Connection Pooling: Utilize connection pooling mechanisms like PgBouncer to manage database connections efficiently and reduce overhead.
  • Partitioning: For large tables, consider table partitioning to improve query performance and manageability.

Monitoring and Alerts

Implement comprehensive monitoring to track the health and performance of your PostgreSQL database. Consider using tools like pgAdmin or third-party solutions like Prometheus and Grafana for monitoring and alerting. Pay special attention to metrics such as CPU usage, memory utilization, disk I/O, and query performance.

Security Best Practices

Ensure your PostgreSQL database is secure:

  • Role-Based Access Control (RBAC): Define roles and permissions carefully to adhere to the principle of least privilege.
  • Encryption: Utilize SSL/TLS for data in transit and consider encrypting sensitive data at rest.
  • Regular Audits: Perform regular security audits and vulnerability assessments to identify and mitigate potential security risks.

Community and Support

Leverage the vibrant PostgreSQL community:

  • Forums and Mailing Lists: Engage with PostgreSQL forums and mailing lists to seek advice, share experiences, and get support.
  • Professional Support: If needed, consider professional support services from companies specializing in PostgreSQL to help with complex migrations, optimizations, or troubleshooting.

Documentation and Knowledge Sharing

Finally, document every aspect of your migration process, decisions made, challenges faced, and solutions found. Share this knowledge within your team and organization to build internal expertise and prepare for future database projects.

By addressing these additional aspects, you can enhance the effectiveness of your migration strategy, ensuring a robust, efficient, and secure PostgreSQL environment that fully supports your organizational needs.


Migrating from MS SQL Server to PostgreSQL requires detailed planning, especially when it comes to migrating jobs, stored procedures, SSIS packages, and tables. By leveraging the right tools and strategies, you can ensure a smooth transition to PostgreSQL, taking full advantage of its robust, open-source ecosystem.

Remember, migration is not just about moving data and code; it’s about transforming your data architecture to be more scalable, cost-effective, and aligned with your organization’s future growth. With careful planning and execution, your migration project can pave the way for enhanced database management and operational efficiencies.

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