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My Little Friend

By Steve Jones,

Say hello to my little friend:

This button is my favorite part of Management Studio. It's on every dialog that I've seen in the 2012 version of the tool and I've begun using it quite liberally. At a recent talk, I told the audience that they should never click "OK" in SSMS again, and should instead click script and then cancel whenever they were making changes.

Someone asked me why, and I had a few reasons, all of which seem to me good reasons to make use of my little friend. First it's easy, Apple/iOS easy. When things aren't easy, we tend not to do them, but clicking "script" is painless, it doesn't interrupt you, and it produces the script you need in a new query window. That alone ought to be a good reason to use it.

However there are other reasons as well. It's a chance to see the exact code being run and making sure it's what you want. If you aren't sure, and you shouldn't be running code without understanding it, this is a good way to learn. It's also a great logging tool. One of the things that has made me successful as a DBA over the years is documenting what I do. Many of my colleagues haven't done this and then spent hours trying to determine what changed on a particular system. If I script out the code I run, I have something I can easily drop into a log for future reference.

To me, this is one of the tools that should improve the knowledge of SQL Server professionals everywhere, by increasing their awareness and knowledge of what's happening on their instances. I'd be happier if the "OK" button would just produce the script and never run it, but I'm not sure we'll get Microsoft to agree to that change.

Now if I only had a "Powershell script" button right next to it.....

Steve Jones


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