About

SQL Server Management Studio is the tool shipped by Microsoft for managing and querying SQL Server databases. It also provides management facilities for Integration Services, Analysis Services and Reporting Services.

Although the tool is based on the Visual Studio framework it does not plug into a Visual Studio development environment such as Visual Studio Pro or BIDS. Some key features provided by SSMS include:

  • Query facilities for SQL Server and SSAS.

  • A tree based system explorer for the supported components that allows various objects such as databases installed on the system to be inspected and managed. Management facilities are provided for SQL Server, SSAS, SSIS and SSRS.

  • Launchers for other management tooling such as the profiler.

  • In later versions a basic facility is available to group sets of files together into projects.

SSMS is descended from the older 'Query Analyser' product produced by Microsoft and is often preferred as a SQL query development tool by people working with SQL Server. Command line based query and management tools such as SQLCMD, ASCMD and RS are also available, mainly designed to integratee into scripting environments.

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