Getting Started with the SQL Server Management Studio - MS Access

When you install the Client-Tools for SQL Server, you also install a number of essential tools to help with your development. The most important tool to first gain experience with is the SQL Server Management Studio. This tool allows you to create databases, tables, views, stored procedures, and manage all the other essential components of your database. Management Studio can be used to manage local, network, and remote SQL Servers, such as SQL Azure.In the following sections, you will see how to perform certain operations with the GUI and how to repeat these operations using T-SQL in a script file. In SQL Server, when you open a Query window, you are in a free-format window, into which you can type and execute portions of SQL. This can then be saved as a script file that you can subsequently execute (in part or in full).

You should understand from the outset that this ability to both work with a GUI interface and with these script files lies at the heart of how to effectively develop with the product. You can balance your choice of interface according to how comfortable you are with working in the GUI versus working with pure SQL.

Running the Demo Database Script
To begin, you will need a sample database. There are three popular database: pubs (an older sample database that is often quoted in older documents), Northwind (popular with Access developers) and AdvertureWorks (shows off all the more advanced features in SQL Server). The best place to get these databases is the CodePlex website at
To get you started, we have included with the samples the Script File instnwnd.sql. To run this file in Management Studio, proceed as follows.

  1. Click File | Open | File, and then open the file instnwnd.sql.
    The file opens in a new query window.
  2. On the Toolbar, click the Execute button.
    This creates the Northwind database, which contains a full set of tables and data.
  3. In Object Explorer, right-click the Databases folder, and then select Refresh.
    You can now explore the sample Northwind database.

Creating a New Database
You also want to create a new empty database, which we have called NorthwindTesting. In this empty database, you can experiment with creating new tables and relationships. Proceed as follows:

  1. Right-click the Databases folder, and then select New Database.
  2. Enter a name for the database, and then click Add.

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