I've tried on four different SQL instances on three different computers to configure a SQL Server alias and then connect to that SQL instance using SSMS on the machine that the alias was configured on. Each time I get the standard error message from SQL Server when it can't find the SQL instance name being used in SSMS.
I've tried on my local machine here at work. I set up an alias for each SQL instance and could not connect. I just also tried to do this om a Dev box for myself. The alias I made there is DBADEV01. From the local Dev machine I launched SSMS and input DBADEV01 as the Server name. I click Connect and I get the standard, "Can't find that SQL Server name" error.
Once I can get this working I will then test out the second part of the article below by having infrastructure create a matching CNAME record so I can test using that SQL alias from outside the local Dev box. This work is all related to migrating off three old SQL Server 2008/08R2 instances. I'm hoping to use aliases and CNAMES to prevent a lot of work changing connection strings in applications.
In my SQL Server Config Manager on my own Dev box I have an alias of DBADEV01 for the name. Port No value is 1433. Server value is the name of the SQL Server instance, which in this case is the default instance of the machine name. I've confirmed in SSCM that I'm using the default 1433 port, matching my alias.