We document our database by storing descriptions for tables, columns, stored procedures etc. in the MS_Description extended property. It's easy enough to handle by scripting, but what I miss is some sort of a right-click command like "Document" on anything in the SSMS's object tree which would take you immediately to MS_Description (or its placeholder if it isn't yet created for that object).

You know, not "right-click -> properties -> extended properties -> type "MS_Description" -> type description text" but just "right-click -> Document -> type description text".

Anybody knows of an extension like this? Thanks!

  • I would suggest documenting the schema outside of the schema - then you have a much better chance at rebuilding in the event of a disaster, can show the schema model to developers etc. without giving them access to the database, etc. Imagine if instead of a separate piece of paper the instructions for putting together a shelving unit were printed on the bottom of each shelf. Jun 24, 2014 at 12:57
  • As a developer, I've wanted to have a way to document each and every field, table, view, etc, directly in the database so I could easily refer to the documentation precisely without having to reference a third party. I would love it if Microsoft supported the MS_Description property in a more native way.
    – Hannah Vernon
    Jun 24, 2014 at 14:24
  • Well, having comments on the objects directly doesn't mean we don't have anything else. We like MS_Description, because some add-ons are helpful enough to pop them up as tooltips and so on, directly in the SQL code (SQLPrompt from Redgate but maybe also some of the newer ssms versions now, not sure). Also, documenting while working in a team depends a lot on how conveniently and quickly you can input. That's to answer why MS_Description. Jun 25, 2014 at 10:18
  • Well when you are using SSDT, you have the information in the source code as well. Sadly I feel that extended properties is another halve baked feature from MSFT, as many others. (right click on a table, select reports...., hint hint...)
    – nojetlag
    Oct 15, 2014 at 10:46
  • 1
    In ssms you can edit the descriptions in a diagram by switching to full table view. I found out about this here dataedo.com/kb/tools/ssms/…
    – Tim Abell
    Jun 19, 2019 at 7:20


Your Answer

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

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.