SQL SERVER – Install Samples Database AdventureWorks for SQL Server

AdventureWorks is a Sample Database shipped with SQL Server and it can be downloaded from GitHub site. AdventureWorks has replaced Northwind and Pubs from the sample database in SQL Server 2005. The Microsoft team keeps updating the sample database as they release new versions.

Update: Please refer this blog post for the updated instructions Download and Install Adventure Works 2014 Sample Databases.

You can download either of the data files and create a database using the same. Here is the script which demonstrates how to create sample database in SQL Server 2012.

Watch a quick video on the same subject.

Every new version of SQL Server should have its own Adventure Works database. The reason is that SQL Server comes up with new features with every version and most of the new features need a new dataset sample to demonstrate the capabilities of the features. This is the why every version of SQL Server has its own AdventureWorks database. SQL Server 2014 has many new features and to support that Microsoft has released new AdventureWorks 2014 Sample Database.

Please note that in SQL Server 2016 the same sample database is replaced by WideWorldImporters. You can read about that over here: Download and Install Sample Database WideWorldImporters

This database is a replacement of old sample database called AdventureWorks (Engine version) and AdventureWorksDW (Data Warehouse version).

Reference: Pinal Dave (https://blog.sqlauthority.com)

SQL Documentation, SQL Download, SQL Sample Database, SQL Server
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103 Comments. Leave new

  • I’m getting an incorrect syntax error on ‘FOR ATTACH_REBUILD_LOG’;
    It states it’s expecting an ‘ID’. What ID ?

    Help! I’m a REAL novice at this.

  • Thank you very much for you instruction :)

  • Thank you very much for this extremely helpful post! I encountered only 2 issues which I quickly figured out. The first was the script failed the first time I ran it because it said I did not have permissions; so I had to go to the data file I downloaded, right click on it, go to Properties>Permissions and give myself Full Control. I then re-ran script and got the desired results that matched what you show. Second, maybe just because I was tired, I didn’t see the AdventureWorks database automatically appear in my SQL Management Studio window as you show – then realized I had not connected to it. Once I did, and selected the database, all was good. These might be trivial for experienced SQL users, but wanted to pass along for any other amateurs like me :) Thanks again – great job and VERY helpful!!!

  • i down loaded the adventureworks 2012 for sql 2012 FROM your link but humanresources.employee table is not giving me the the table with employeeid, managerid and so on. instead it gives me businessEntityID, MARITAL STATUS, GENDER, BIRTHDATE, HIREDATE etc etc… i don’t know if i downloaded something wrong.

  • I have created a cube in SSSAS. And Now I want to create reporrt using that cube.
    In report I have to create cascading parameters (Example: I have two parameter country and city.
    So If I select country then their respective Citys should come in City parameter )

    So any one of you could you please let me know that How Can I create cacscading parameter?

    Should I create some hierarchy in SSAS?
    Or I have to do something at report level ??

  • Ted Bissell
    May 31, 2013 8:51 pm

    Pinal, your instructions are of less value by your not dealing with the common permission and connection issues that people face when downloading and trying to install. Further, your narrative presentation leaves much to be desired, at least for English-speaking citizens of the U.S. . I understand your ‘English’ ; but bad diction, pronunciation, and obfuscating accent are not helpful. You perhaps would do somewhat better if you limited yourself to writing only the script for narration; but as someone who speaks, reads; writes three languages(including English); and knowing some vocabulary in Hindi, Urdu, and Punjabi; I would not attempt to give a presentation in Hindi of even something as simple as this is technically; that was full of mispronunciations, mixing of tenses, bad sentence construction, and misspellings…Other than that; I appreciate your efforts…

    • Hi Ted,

      Thanks for your feedback.

      • Hi Pinal,
        Thank You! The notice of the upgrade of Adventure Works is welcome news to those developers among us who are looking to create great templates for MVC4, EF5, HTML5, CSS3 sites with services and I continue to be a grateful follower of your insights into the SQL Server world!

  • I still have this error:

    Msg 1813, Level 16, State 2, Line 1
    Could not open new database ‘AdventureWorks2012’. CREATE DATABASE is aborted.
    Msg 948, Level 20, State 1, Line 1
    The database ‘AdventureWorks2012’ cannot be opened because it is version 706. This server supports version 662 and earlier. A downgrade path is not supported.

  • hi pinal , i am getting this error can u give me reply for this error I would be grateful to you
    Msg 5120, Level 16, State 101, Line 1
    Unable to open the physical file “E:\AdventureWorksDW2012_Data”. Operating system error 2: “2(The system cannot find the file specified.)”.

  • Manuel J. Herrera (@EndyMX)
    August 16, 2013 3:54 am

    For the recent posters… You just have to change the SECURITY permissions for both files (.mdf and .ldf). Thanks to Lee McIntosh, this is the direct link to his comment in this very post: https://blog.sqlauthority.com/2012/03/15/sql-server-install-samples-database-adventure-works-for-sql-server-2012/#comment-281896

  • Msg 5133, Level 16, State 1, Line 1
    Directory lookup for the file “D:\AdventureWorks2012_Data.mdf” failed with the operating system error 21(The device is not ready.).

    I get this error

  • For those who are having problems:
    1 – to download this link
    2 – follow this tutorial

    Sorry for my english google translator

  • Timbangan Kenko
    October 24, 2013 9:56 pm

    What’s up, just wanted to mention, I loved this post.
    It was inspiring. Keep on posting!

  • Please
    can give me sql server 2012 licened setup link

  • tomasreynoso
    July 12, 2014 10:07 pm

    thanks! usefull..

  • tigerfromcity1
    January 10, 2015 3:51 pm


    I have installed the SQL Server 2012, when i am attaching the sample database, there is a log file and even if remove the log file the database is not going to be attached, can you pelase help me to solve this problem.



    • What is the error you are getting? If the database is not “cleanly shutdown” then rebuild has to be forced. Search for force rebuild log.

  • Followed the steps and it worked for me.

    thank you.

  • Thank you. The web is full of misdirection and inappropriate scripts for this one. Yours is the right one.

  • Ohh my goodness you saved me from ripping my hair off. Thank you

  • I have a problem in attaching the adventurerworks2012,it givs me an error:TITLE: Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio………….Failed to retrieve data for this request. (Microsoft.SqlServer.Management.Sdk.Sfc)

    An exception occurred while executing a Transact-SQL statement or batch. (Microsoft.SqlServer.ConnectionInfo)


    The server principal “HSTNobekho.Baba” is not able to access the database “model” under the current security context. (Microsoft SQL Server, Error: 916)

    For help, click:



  • vinnu ganji
    July 5, 2015 1:18 pm

    thanks a lot sir


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