Sunday, November 27, 2011

SQL Server Management Studio Express

Who doesn't love free? I certainly do. Microsoft has offered a great free version of its flagship database software, MS SQL, for quite some time now. And up until a few years ago it didn't have a GUI front-end, but Microsoft fixed that with the release of SQL Server Management Studio Express.

Now out of the box, it typically doesn't connect, i.e. to a WSUS or WSS Embedded, Compact or Windows Internal database. For security purposes they disable the Named Pipes protocol in MS SQL and for unknown reasons the Management Studio has difficulty connecting to the SQL instance on the local server, i.e. localhost.

To get going with the SQL Management Studio, the Named Pipes protocol needs to be enabled. Go to Start > Programs > MS SQL > Config Tools > SQL Config Mgr, then under SQL Server Network Configuration > Protocols for MSQLSERVER, double-click Named Pipes, set Enabled to Yes. Then the MS SQL Service must be restarted.

When you fire up the SQL Management Studio, use \\.\pipe\MSSQL$MICROSOFT##SSEE\sql\query in the Server Name field, choose your Authentication and click Connect.

Free is good again.

Update: For Windows Server 2012 & 2012 R2, the path is \\.\pipe\MICROSOFT##WID\tsql\query

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