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Django backend for Microsoft SQL Server

Project description

django-mssql-backend is a fork of django-pyodbc-azure



  • Django 2.2 or newer

  • pyodbc 3.0 or newer


  1. Install pyodbc and Django

  2. Install django-mssql-backend

    pip install django-mssql-backend
  3. Now you can point the ENGINE setting in the settings file used by your Django application or project to the 'sql_server.pyodbc' module path

    'ENGINE': 'sql_server.pyodbc'

Regex Support

django-mssql-backend supports regex using a CLR .dll file. To install it, run

python install_regex_clr {database_name}


Standard Django settings

The following entries in a database-level settings dictionary in DATABASES control the behavior of the backend:


    String. It must be "sql_server.pyodbc".

  • NAME

    String. Database name. Required.

  • HOST

    String. SQL Server instance in "server\instance" format.

  • PORT

    String. Server instance port. An empty string means the default port.

  • USER

    String. Database user name in "user" format. If not given then MS Integrated Security will be used.


    String. Database user password.


    Boolean. Set this to False if you want to disable Django’s transaction management and implement your own.

and the following entries are also available in the TEST dictionary for any given database-level settings dictionary:

  • NAME

    String. The name of database to use when running the test suite. If the default value (None) is used, the test database will use the name “test_” + NAME.


    String. The collation order to use when creating the test database. If the default value (None) is used, the test database is assigned the default collation of the instance of SQL Server.


    String. The creation-order dependencies of the database. See the official Django documentation for more details.


    String. The alias of the database that this database should mirror during testing. Default value is None. See the official Django documentation for more details.


Dictionary. Current available keys are:

  • driver

    String. ODBC Driver to use ("ODBC Driver 13 for SQL Server", "SQL Server Native Client 11.0", "FreeTDS" etc). Default is "ODBC Driver 13 for SQL Server".

  • isolation_level

    String. Sets transaction isolation level for each database session. Valid values for this entry are READ UNCOMMITTED, READ COMMITTED, REPEATABLE READ, SNAPSHOT, and SERIALIZABLE. Default is None which means no isolation levei is set to a database session and SQL Server default will be used.

  • dsn

    String. A named DSN can be used instead of HOST.

  • host_is_server

    Boolean. Only relevant if using the FreeTDS ODBC driver under Unix/Linux.

    By default, when using the FreeTDS ODBC driver the value specified in the HOST setting is used in a SERVERNAME ODBC connection string component instead of being used in a SERVER component; this means that this value should be the name of a dataserver definition present in the freetds.conf FreeTDS configuration file instead of a hostname or an IP address.

    But if this option is present and it’s value is True, this special behavior is turned off.

    See for more information.

  • unicode_results

    Boolean. If it is set to True, pyodbc’s unicode_results feature is activated and strings returned from pyodbc are always Unicode. Default value is False.

  • extra_params

    String. Additional parameters for the ODBC connection. The format is "param=value;param=value".

  • collation

    String. Name of the collation to use when performing text field lookups against the database. Default is None; this means no collation specifier is added to your lookup SQL (the default collation of your database will be used). For Chinese language you can set it to "Chinese_PRC_CI_AS".

  • connection_timeout

    Integer. Sets the timeout in seconds for the database connection process. Default value is 0 which disables the timeout.

  • connection_retries

    Integer. Sets the times to retry the database connection process. Default value is 5.

  • connection_retry_backoff_time

    Integer. Sets the back off time in seconds for reries of the database connection process. Default value is 5.

  • query_timeout

    Integer. Sets the timeout in seconds for the database query. Default value is 0 which disables the timeout.

backend-specific settings

The following project-level settings also control the behavior of the backend:


    Boolean. If it is set to False, pyodbc’s connection pooling feature won’t be activated.


Here is an example of the database settings:

    'default': {
        'ENGINE': 'sql_server.pyodbc',
        'NAME': 'mydb',
        'USER': 'user@myserver',
        'PASSWORD': 'password',
        'HOST': '',
        'PORT': '',

        'OPTIONS': {
            'driver': 'ODBC Driver 13 for SQL Server',

# set this to False if you want to turn off pyodbc's connection pooling


The following features are currently not supported:

  • Altering a model field from or to AutoField at migration

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