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According to this answer about contained database disadvantages:

If you connect to a contained database as a contained user, SSMS will not fully support IntelliSense. You'll get basic underlining for syntax errors, but no auto-complete lists or tooltips and all the fun stuff. I filed a bug about this issue, and it remains open.

So is there any way to get IntelliSense-style functionality? Can anyone vouch for a product that will work in this scenario?

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Did you try Red-Gate's SQL Prompt? (I haven't, and it may be prone to the same issue.) Also depending on the purpose of contained databases in your use case, you could have a separate login that has the ability to fetch metadata, unlike the contained user, and use that for development (though I fully understand that may actually defeat the purpose). – Aaron Bertrand Mar 22 '13 at 14:49
You can also try [SQL complete][]. It has an express (free) version that I use and am happy with. – StanleyJohns Mar 22 '13 at 18:20
up vote 1 down vote accepted

I really don't think this is a problem with Management Studio, just that the user the tool has to act on behalf of does not have the permission to pull the metadata required to support IntelliSense. So I doubt other tools will fill the need. Your choices are:

  1. Try other tools like SQL Prompt and SQL Complete
  2. Use a server-level login with adequate DB privileges for development (vs. application runtime)
  3. Live without IntelliSense

Hopefully they will fix this problem at some point. Even my Connect item incorrectly blames the UI when the problem is with the permissions (not) granted to the contained user.

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Live without IntelliSense? hahahahaaaa. I will try the tools mentioned and create an answer if any of them work. – scw Mar 22 '13 at 21:14
IIRC, SQL Azure does not support IntelliSense. If you are thinking of using Azure in the future then you might want to get used the lack of IntelliSense now. :-) – Greenstone Walker Mar 25 '13 at 4:27
@Greenstone Looking into it, but I wouldn't assume that that is a permanent restriction. – Aaron Bertrand Mar 25 '13 at 12:48

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