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SQL Server – Different Ways to Check Object Definition

sp_helptext is widely used for checking object definition in SQL Server. sp_helptext can be used to check definition of various database objects like Views, Stored Procedures and User Defined Functions.

There are two other options which can be used to retrieve object definition:

OBJECT_DEFINITION( object_id ) – is a built-in… Read more

2 comments, 495 reads

Posted in SQL and Me on 14 April 2014

SQL Server – Hide system objects in Object Explorer – SQL Server Management Studio

By default, SQL Server system objects are listed in Object Explorer in Management Studio. These system objects include system database, system tables/views/procedures and so on.

SQL Server Management Studio provides an option to hide these objects from Object Explorer to prevent *accidental* use.

To enable this option follow below steps. Read more

1 comments, 2,368 reads

Posted in SQL and Me on 7 April 2014

SQL Server – How to get last access/update time for a table

Modify date and create date for a table can be retrieved from sys.tables catalog view. When any structural changes are made the modify date is updated. It can be queried as follows:

USE [SqlAndMe]

SELECT    [TableName] = name,
FROM    sys.tables
WHERE    name = 'TransactionHistoryArchive'


  Read more

2 comments, 1,611 reads

Posted in SQL and Me on 11 March 2014

SQL Server – Displaying line numbers in Query Editor – SSMS

You can enable line numbers to be displayed in SSMS Query Editor. This is extremely useful when working on a large module.

To enable line numbers in Query Editor windows, follow below steps:

Step1: Go to Tools > Options

Step2: In the Options dialog box navigate to Text Editor >… Read more

0 comments, 403 reads

Posted in SQL and Me on 20 January 2014

SQL Server – Difference between @@CONNECTIONS and @@MAX_CONNECTIONS

@@MAX_CONNECTIONS in SQL Server returns maximum number of simultaneous user connections allowed. Maximum user connections allowed by SQL Server by default is 32,767; this number also depends on application and server hardware limits. This cam also be configured at server-level to avoid too many connections.

@@CONNECTIONS returns number of connection… Read more

0 comments, 571 reads

Posted in SQL and Me on 13 January 2014

SQL Server – Different ways to check Recovery Model of a database

A Recovery Model is property of a database which control how transaction log is maintained. SQL Server supports SIMPLE, FULL and BULK-LOGGED recovery models.

There are multiple ways to check recovery model of a database in SQL Server.

1. Using SQL Server Management Studio:

Right click on Database in… Read more

1 comments, 1,404 reads

Posted in SQL and Me on 6 January 2014

SQL Server – Calculating elapsed time from DATETIME

Elapsed time can be calculated from DATETIME field by extracting number of hours/minutes and seconds. You can use below query to calculate elapsed time between two dates:

-- Vishal -


SET @startTime = '2013-11-05 12:20:35'
SET @endTime = '2013-11-10 01:22:30'


Read more

8 comments, 4,561 reads

Posted in SQL and Me on 23 December 2013

SQL Server – Kill all sessions using database

Before an existing database can be restored, there should be connections using the database in question. If the database is currently in use the RESTORE command fails with below error:

Msg 3101, Level 16, State 1, Line 2
Exclusive access could not be obtained because the database is in use.
Read more

3 comments, 683 reads

Posted in SQL and Me on 25 November 2013

SQL Server – Custom sorting in ORDER BY clause

ORDER BY clause can be used to sort the results returned by SELECT statement in SQL Server. It orders the result set by specified column list. When used with character data type columns it sorts data in dictionary-order.

Sometimes, we need result set to be sorted in a custom order,… Read more

2 comments, 1,511 reads

Posted in SQL and Me on 18 November 2013

SQL Server – Script to get Service Account for all local instances

Earlier on my blog I posted on How to get SQL Server Service Account using T-SQL. That works on a single instance. If you multiple instances of SQL Server installed on a server you can use below script to get SQL Server and SQL Server Agent service account information… Read more

1 comments, 709 reads

Posted in SQL and Me on 26 August 2013

SQL Server – Get SQL Server Service Account using T-SQL

SQL Server service account information is stored in Windows Registry database. You can get this information from Services Console or SQL Server Configuration Manager.

To get account information from Services Console:

1. Go to Start > Run > Services.msc

2. Right Click on SQL Server Service, i.e. “SQL… Read more

5 comments, 1,753 reads

Posted in SQL and Me on 20 August 2013

SQL Server – Import text file using xp_cmdshell

There are several options available to import data from external sources to SQL Server. Such as Import & Export Wizard, BULK INSERT command, SSIS and OPENROWSET.

Apart from this options you can also use xp_cmdshell to import text file to SQL Server. We need to utilize dos command TYPE for… Read more

0 comments, 529 reads

Posted in SQL and Me on 29 July 2013

SQL Server – Get values as DATETIME from sysjobhistory

This is a follow-up post on SQL Server – Check SQL Agent Job History using T-SQL.

SQL Server Agent stores SQL jobs history in sysjobhistory. It has two different columns for date and time, Run_Date and Run_Time. Since this is not available as DATETIME we cannot filter… Read more

0 comments, 440 reads

Posted in SQL and Me on 22 July 2013

SQL Server – SELECTing/Displaying Top N rows from a table

To SELECT only top N rows from a table we can use TOP clause in SELECT statement. Using TOP clause we can also specify percentage option.

For example, both of these statements are valid:

USE SqlAndMe



SELECT TOP 5 EmployeeId,FirstName,LastName

FROM   dbo.Table_Employees

GO Read more

0 comments, 470 reads

Posted in SQL and Me on 15 July 2013

SQL Server – How to change SQL Server ERRORLOG location

By default SQL Server ERRORLOG is stored in "C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\InstanceFolder\MSSQL\Log" folder. The ERRORLOG location is configured as a startup parameter for SQL Server Service.

To change the location of ERRORLOG you need to modify the startup parameter -e.

For example, if you need to move logs to C:\Logs\… Read more

3 comments, 1,506 reads

Posted in SQL and Me on 8 July 2013

SQL Server – How to connect to SQL Server when ‘sa’ account is disabled

If you have lost the password for sa account or does not have any administrative account and you are locked out of SQL Server you can still login to SQL Server as an Administrator using Local administrator account.


You can use any account which is part of local Administrators… Read more

6 comments, 3,315 reads

Posted in SQL and Me on 1 July 2013

SQL Server – How to Enable a Disabled SQL Server Login

When an account is disable it cannot be used to login to SQL Server. You will receive below error when logging-in to SQL Server using a disabled Login account:

You can enable a disabled SQL Server Login using SQL Server Management Studio or via T-SQL code.


To enable a… Read more

2 comments, 456 reads

Posted in SQL and Me on 24 June 2013

SQL Server – Update Table with INNER JOIN

Often we may need to update a column in a table based of another column in another table.

In SQL Server you can do this using UPDATE statement by joining tables together.

To understand this better let’s take a look at below contrived example.

USE [SqlAndMe]



SELECT CustomerID Read more

1 comments, 690 reads

Posted in SQL and Me on 18 June 2013

SQL Server – How to get sizes of all databases on a server

To get database size information we can use sys.master_files catalog view. This view contains a row per file of a database for all databases.

The columns of interest for retrieving database size information are:

Column Name Description
database_id ID of the database to which the file belongs to
type_desc Description…

Read more

8 comments, 622 reads

Posted in SQL and Me on 10 June 2013

SQL Server – How to Detach a Database

To move a database from one location to other you fist need to detach the database from server. In this article we will learn different ways to detach a database from server.

There are two different methods available to detach a database from a server.

Method 1. Detach a Database… Read more

0 comments, 687 reads

Posted in SQL and Me on 3 June 2013

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