I'm try to get force Parameterization on a simple adhoc SQL query.As explained in this article https://www.simple-talk.com/sql/performance/fixing-cache-bloat-problems-with-guide-plans-and-forced-parameterization/

But even trying to do this with the simplest query I cant get it to work

,title VARCHAR(150)
INSERT INTO fruit VALUES ( 1, 'Apple') , ( 2, 'Banana'), ( 3, 'Orange'), ( 4, 'Pear')

DECLARE @params nvarchar(max);
DECLARE @stmt nvarchar(max);
EXEC sp_get_query_template N'SELECT title FROM fruit WHERE id = 4',@stmt OUTPUT, @params OUTPUT;

--SELECT @params
EXEC sp_create_plan_guide 

SELECT title FROM fruit WHERE id = 1

Plan XML:

Shows a compile and doesn't use the plan guide, is there something i'm missing here? Where am i going wrong?

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-16"?>
<ShowPlanXML xmlns:xsi="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance" xmlns:xsd="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema" Version="1.5" Build="13.0.1601.5" xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/sqlserver/2004/07/showplan">
        <StmtSimple StatementCompId="1" StatementEstRows="1" StatementId="1" StatementOptmLevel="TRIVIAL" CardinalityEstimationModelVersion="130" StatementSubTreeCost="0.0032831" StatementText="select title from fruit where id = @0" StatementType="SELECT" QueryHash="0xC02C3539A6CB7253" QueryPlanHash="0x257948D9E7B502E7" RetrievedFromCache="true" SecurityPolicyApplied="false">
          <QueryPlan DegreeOfParallelism="1" CachedPlanSize="16" CompileTime="1" CompileCPU="1" CompileMemory="104">
            <MemoryGrantInfo SerialRequiredMemory="0" SerialDesiredMemory="0" />
            <OptimizerHardwareDependentProperties EstimatedAvailableMemoryGrant="256000" EstimatedPagesCached="64000" EstimatedAvailableDegreeOfParallelism="2" />
            <RelOp AvgRowSize="86" EstimateCPU="0.0001581" EstimateIO="0.003125" EstimateRebinds="0" EstimateRewinds="0" EstimatedExecutionMode="Row" EstimateRows="1" LogicalOp="Clustered Index Seek" NodeId="0" Parallel="false" PhysicalOp="Clustered Index Seek" EstimatedTotalSubtreeCost="0.0032831" TableCardinality="4">
                <ColumnReference Database="[DV]" Schema="[dbo]" Table="[fruit]" Column="title" />
                <RunTimeCountersPerThread Thread="0" ActualRows="1" ActualRowsRead="1" Batches="0" ActualEndOfScans="1" ActualExecutions="1" ActualExecutionMode="Row" ActualElapsedms="0" ActualCPUms="0" ActualScans="0" ActualLogicalReads="2" ActualPhysicalReads="0" ActualReadAheads="0" ActualLobLogicalReads="0" ActualLobPhysicalReads="0" ActualLobReadAheads="0" />
              <IndexScan Ordered="true" ScanDirection="FORWARD" ForcedIndex="false" ForceSeek="false" ForceScan="false" NoExpandHint="false" Storage="RowStore">
                    <ColumnReference Database="[DV]" Schema="[dbo]" Table="[fruit]" Column="title" />
                <Object Database="[DV]" Schema="[dbo]" Table="[fruit]" Index="[PK__fruit__3213E83F1B7D3288]" IndexKind="Clustered" Storage="RowStore" />
                      <Prefix ScanType="EQ">
                          <ColumnReference Database="[DV]" Schema="[dbo]" Table="[fruit]" Column="id" />
                          <ScalarOperator ScalarString="CONVERT_IMPLICIT(bigint,[@0],0)">
                            <Convert DataType="bigint" Style="0" Implicit="true">
                                  <ColumnReference Column="@0" />
              <ColumnReference Column="@0" ParameterCompiledValue="(1)" ParameterRuntimeValue="(1)" />

2 Answers 2


Your plan guide is being applied, and the query is being forced parameterized.

Unfortunately, this is not so easy to see in your particular situation, for a couple of reasons:

Reason 1: Post-execution plans do not show plan guide properties

A quick and reliable way to see that your query is using the plan guide is to request a pre-execution (estimated) plan.

So, without running the query, the execution plan shown in SSMS will have a root node with two extra properties (compared with the plan provided in the question):

Extra properties

These properties do not appear in post-execution plans, nor in prepared cached plans.

Side note

In the post-execution (actual) plan you provided, the only (undocumented) indication that parameterization was forced is that the first parameter marker is @0 in the Seek tooltip:


Without the plan guide, your test query still qualifies for simple parameterization, but the parameter marker in the tooltip is @1:


Reason 2: You have optimize for ad hoc workloads enabled

With this configuration option enabled, the first time you run the adhoc query, no plan is cached, just a plan stub.

You would need to run the query twice to see the plan stub populated.

There still won't be a full plan (just a root SELECT node) but this node will have the TemplatePlanGuideDB and TemplatePlanGuideName properties populated:

Stub properties

Notice also that the ParameterizedPlanHandle property points to the plan handle of the fully parameterized (prepared) query plan in cache. The prepared plan does not contain the extra plan guide properties, as mentioned previously.

Without the adhoc option, the adhoc compiled plan will show the important plan guide properties.


Where are you getting the plan from? Can you try to retrieve the plan from cache and you should see the guide.

select st.*,st1.*,cp.* from sys.dm_exec_cached_plans cp
CROSS APPLY sys.dm_exec_query_plan(cp.plan_handle) st 
CROSS APPLY sys.dm_exec_sql_text(cp.plan_handle) st1
where cp.objtype='Adhoc'
  • query plan is null: NULL NULL 0 NULL 13 NULL NULL 0 SELECT title FROM fruit WHERE id = 1 11437 1 1 128 0x00000095AE80E040 Compiled Plan Stub Adhoc 0x06000D009A7B9605F0F380AE9500000001000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000 2 NULL ..Using an adhoc plan rather than plan guide
    – davey
    Commented Nov 24, 2016 at 8:55
  • Keeps ending up as adhoc in cache with no query plan
    – davey
    Commented Nov 24, 2016 at 9:01

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