When using Central Management Server (CMS), under Central Management Server Actions, SQL Server Configuration Manager (SSCM) is an option.

Screenshot of CMS Options.

When launched, the GUI reflects the information of the CMS. Apart from what the GUI shows, I'm hopeful that changes made will affect all CMS managed instances.

Can anyone confirm whether changes made here will effect all the managed CMS instances? If possible, this could save much time if all the actions of SSCM can be performed against all the CMS-registered instances.

  • Can you give few examples of the changes you are looking to make through CMS? Jan 20, 2012 at 17:56
  • The main dragon for slaying here is mass changing of service account info. Which service account is being used, the password for a service account found on more than one host, etc. Another use case would be to mass-restart the SQL Server Service. Jan 31, 2012 at 20:37

2 Answers 2


No. If you right click on the level that you are on in the screenshot SSCM option will only allow you to make modifications to the instances installed on the same host as the CMS instance. You can drill down into the CMS levels and make changes to the other hosts/instances you have registered but there is not a way to use SSCM to do this globally. I tested this by registering another CMS instance and running the SSCM option on each CMS instance (each runs on a host with multiple instances) and in both cases it only shows you the instances installed on the individual host.

  • So you are saying you observed you could make changes to all the instances on the given host at once? Is that correct? So you had @ minimum a default and a named instance, and you could affect change on both, i.e. changing the password for a service account? Jan 31, 2012 at 20:35
  • That is correct, you can modify the service or protocol settings for all instances installed on 1 host, just not at the same time. SQL Configuration Manager will only let you change the properties of one service at a time, and you can only change the protocol settings for one instance at a time. Jan 31, 2012 at 21:57

Taken from SQLServerPedia:

Manage Your Services Remotely

Another big advantage of CMS grouping all your servers together in a single place is that you can administrate the SQL Services on the target box easily. To do this right-click on the instance name. On the submenu you have a couple of service-related options. Under the Service Control option you can quickly Start, Stop, Pause, Resume or Restart your SQL Service. Of note, this action only applies to your SQL Engine service so if you have SQL Agent Service running (which relies on Engine) you may need to manually restart that service depending on how you have your services configured.

For a little more control over the services on the target system select SQL Server Configuration Manager from the menu selection. This opens your typical Configuration Manager console but difference being that it now shows you the services on the target server you selected. To verify this you can see the target server's name in parenthesis next to SQL Server Configuration Manager in the left hand window pane. From here you can look at and configure your various SQL Server Services such as the database engine, Reporting Services, SQL Server Agent or SQL Server Browser. Be aware, however, this remote management of configuration manager only works on SQL Server 2005 editions and above.

  • Thank you for the response. I had read that article, though it's still not clear as to whether or not you can effect mass change (even a service restart) via CMS Actions. That's what I hope to determine.
    – Eric Higgins
    Jan 19, 2012 at 15:56

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