In visual studio I find it very helpful to find where a variable is being used by highlighting it and all occurrences of that var will appear highlighted as well.

Is there a way to enable this feature in Sql Server Management studio 2014 while viewing scripts?

Text highlighting is mentioned here.


  • 1
    I've never had that work in any version of SSMS, even in Visual Studio itself. It might for C# or web based language files but SQL and PS1 files do not offer support for it that I have seen. You might find add-on or extension that covers it. – user507 Aug 15 '16 at 17:42
  • 1
    Yeah,I find myself copying and pasting between notepad++ just to see text highlighting makes. Very annoying... any suggestions would be helpful. – RayLoveless Aug 15 '16 at 18:02
  • For having it higlighted, there is none. You simply use find and F3 key, only thing I use. Which I don't recall ever seeing the highlighting selected values supported in SSMS 2012. It is not something I need or care about having, may be why I never noticed. – user507 Aug 15 '16 at 19:15

SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) 2016 has this feature. There is no real reason to user the older versions now as it's supposed to be backwards compatible, although there may be a bug or two (see below).

Just press Ctrl+ F to see your keywords highlighted like this:

SSMS 2016 highlighting

Maybe a few bugs for SSMS 2016 on connect ...

enter image description here


This feature is available with certain plugins, if I'm not mistaken. I believe RedGate's "SQL Prompt" plugin has this.

My favorite from Visual Studio was "Go To Definition." I miss that one a lot from my app dev days.

  • As do I, as do I :) – SQLDevDBA Aug 16 '16 at 14:18
  • 1
    @MguerraTorres "Go To Definition" is kind of there. In SSMS highlight any object name text in the query window and press Alt+F1. Any text you highlighted is passed to sp_help. Alter these in Tools > Options Keyboard > Query Shortcuts. I always have sp_helptext on Ctrl+F1 and select count(*) from on Ctrl+8. – wBob Aug 16 '16 at 16:33

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.