I am using temporal tables within my database and when I right click on my table in Management Studio 2017 (v17.4 14.0.17213.0) I do not see the Select Top 1000 Rows in the context menu (there is no problem with non temporal tables)

ssms missing select top

Any ideas how to get this context menu back? I have a feeling it is to do with the version of SQL Server I am running (SQL 13.1.4001.0 Express Edition)

  • Related: 1 and 2 – Alexei Mar 2 '18 at 11:34

My SSMS 17.5 does show the context-menu for "Select Top 1000 Rows" against a SQL Server 2016 temporal-enabled table on Enterprise Edition.

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In SQL Server 2016 Express, via SSMS 17.5, I'm not able to see the "Select Top 1000 Rows" context menu.

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This appears to be a purposeful decision by Microsoft within SQL Server Management Studio.

  • 1
    Pretty sad decision. I hardly imagine anyone goes to his manager and says: "You know, let's switch to Enterprise for $$$$$. It's not that Express doesn't work for us, I just lack context menus in Management Studio". – Andriy K Sep 19 '19 at 14:02
  • I agree, @AndriyK - some decisions are very strange. – Hannah Vernon Sep 20 '19 at 12:35

Just a workaround I found "by chance":

If using temporal tables, I always create the temporal table as mytable_history.

So if you open the tree for that table it shows always at first the temporal table name. If you right-click the mouse on THAT temporal table it SHOWS the "select nnn rows and edit nnn rows"

So if you create the script it obviously contains the same column names - just with wrong "from", so I just delete that string "_history" and execute that. And VOILA, I now HAVE my select on the table I wanted ...

Related issue in SQL Server forum/suggestion pages, please vote:


  • The linked feedback.azure.com bug is for the "Design" menu entry (SSMS does not support the Table Design tool for any SKU of SQL Server) and is unrelated to the massively incorrect and useless context menu in SSMS for Temporal Tables in SQL Server Express. – Dai Apr 9 '19 at 11:05
  • I filed more specific request time ago too: feedback.azure.com/forums/908035-sql-server/suggestions/… – Andriy K Sep 19 '19 at 14:12

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