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SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic

Forget everything I said earlier about SQL Server 2005 Management Studio (herein referred to as MS from now on); it’s slow, bloated, and just all around pathetic.  It seemed great at first, but after having done some heavy lifting with it lately it just seems…well, geared for idiots.  It’s just really been dumbed down to the point looking like Access (no offense to the Access folks).  Getting anything done takes an insane amount of clicks, and it just feels soooo slow compared to Enterprise Manager/Query Analyzer…very simple tasks take forever to finish up (for example, backing up a database…MS makes Enterprise Manager seem like a Ferrari).  I never thought I’d say this, but I actually miss QA at this point.

The latest thing that made me go wtf was the following:  I needed to load up some 40 SQL statements for execution earlier today…normally I would just load them into a new Visual Studio database project, select them all and run them…works beautifully.  Unfortunately VS2003 can’t connect/communicate with SQL2005 (Microsoft, if you’re reading this (and I know you do sometimes), please back port this into VS2003, not all of us will be using VS2005 strictly on our SQL2005 databases), so I had to recreate my database project in VS2005 and trying to add all the SQL files to the project threw an error (the generic “parameter not supported” error if anyone is keeping score) which was a real bummer.

So I selected all of the .sql files and opened them…instead of getting one MS instance with 40 tabs, wouldn’t you know that I got…you guessed it, 40 instances of MS, and each instance of course challenged me for authorization credentials so I couldn’t just right click the grouping on the task bar and close the entire group…I had to go through one by one and click connect (or cancel), then close the window.  Next attempt:  Open a single instance of MS and open the files from within the instance.  Un-bloody-f’ing real…they do indeed open up in individual tabs now, but I again get prompted for authorization creds for each file, and only 6 tabs are displayed below the menu bar.  It took a few seconds to find the very uintuitively placed icon that lets you see the rest of the windows, albeit in list form and not tabs.  Come on guys…after opening up tons of tabs in VS, you are given the very pleasant option of scrolling to the left/right to see hidden tabs and just all around easier to use.

So then after clicking the connect button 40 more times I start the task of running each statement.  First tab: I select the database I need from the dropdown, run the statements, go to the next tab…and the database selection is reset to “Master”…I have dozens of databases so doing this on each tab simply isn’t feasible, so I go off searching for a setting that allows me to specify the database to use for my MS session.  Oh wait…there isn’t one.  At this point I’m ready to fire up osql (where you can specify command switches which are session wide) and write my own batch file that does this for me.  Thinking that I’m probably not the only person on the planet who needs to run an entire folder of .sql files, I Googled around and found this great little utility that does it for me, which does exactly what I want it do on the first try.

While I’m griping, why doesn’t double clicking most objects (tables/sprocs/etc) in MS object explorer do anything…like maybe open the object and let me do something with it?  If I double click a table, it should either open in design view, or show me the data in it…doubling clicking a sproc should show me the sql statements, right?  No, you have to right click the object and choose from one of the menu commands now…no defaults.  And also gone is the “TOP” option when you open a table…if it has a gazillion rows in it, you’re gonna get all gazillion of them (well, you can click stop at anytime, but that’s still pretty pathetic)…if I’m in Enterprise Manager/Mgmt Studio, chances are good I’m just needing some quick and dirty data to look at, so give me the option.  It is very much worth mentioning that I usually do stuff like this from raw SQL statements in QA, but if I just need something quickly I’ll use EM/MS.  At first I really liked the integration of QA/EM into one tool, but now I’m absolutely craving separation again.  QA was quick, easy to use, and just all around fantastic compared to the query windows in MS.

Ok, enough ranting…but feel free to chime in, and if you know of any other SQL2005 rant posts out there please let me know as I’d very much like to see what other people have to say about it.  Cheers.


Posted Tue, Nov 22 2005 7:35 PM by Jayson Knight
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Comments

Ron wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Sat, Nov 26 2005 5:20 PM
Jason, I agree with what you have to say and feel your pain. Until MS fixes this, maybe the workaround is to concat all sql files you wish to run into one file and open that file in the management studio.
Frans Bouma wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Sat, Nov 26 2005 6:17 PM
Why not use QA on sqlserver 2005? You can connect to SQLServer 2005 with QA, I just tried. It doesn't show you all the info, like the schemas which are not bound to an existing user are gone, but if you use sqlserver 2000 compatible stuff, no problems :)
Jayson Knight wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Sat, Nov 26 2005 9:45 PM
Ron: That's why I went off in search of a tool that runs all .sql files in a single directory...I was gonna roll my own utility but figured someone else had probably done it already. But yeah, essentially it does the same thing, albeit with osql commands.
Jayson Knight wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Sat, Nov 26 2005 9:48 PM
Frans: Wow, good call! I didn't even think about that...I just figured if VS2003 can't connect, no other previous versions of tools could either. I still hope MS addresses some of the other stuff though, namely the tab issue (a HUGE gui no-no IMO), along with the performance issues of MgmtStudio and the ability to specify a database for an entire session...if there were hundreds of db's on a single server it's a total PITA to scroll through on each tab to find the db you need.
Roland Kaufmann wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Sun, Nov 27 2005 1:25 AM
Why the toy utility? What is wrong with `for %a in (*.sql) do osql -E %a`? (I guess you should use sqlcmd instead of osql, but that's another matter)
Jayson Knight wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Sun, Nov 27 2005 1:40 AM
Roland: At the risk of losing my credibility here, that's the first I've heard of sqlcmd (and I'm looking into it now)...and I guess old osql habits die hard, though my osql skills are a bit rusty as well. Thanks for the info! If you have any more tips pls share.
JosephCooney wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Mon, Nov 28 2005 5:18 PM
I've started using Management Studio a lot more since the RTM and I'm not that happy with it either to be honest. Maybe I'm just getting to know my way around but it seemed like before Enterprise Manager showed you useful (related) things in several different places, whereas Management Studio just has them in one place. Today one of the servers Management Studio was connected to was re-booted and the whole thing just hung. Even when the server came back Management Studio did not.
protected virtual void jaysonBlog { wrote Looking for Some Definitive SQLCMD.EXE Resources
on Tue, Nov 29 2005 1:26 AM
Does anyone know of a good hard core SQLCMD (not the ADO.Net object, the OSQL replacement that ships...
Adam wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Fri, Dec 9 2005 9:03 AM
I built several server registrations which set the default database and grouped them by categories such as: Application, Geography, Version (2k,2k5). This allows me to quickly drill into a group of dbs depending on the function I am performing and build a query for the correct server/db. It seems redundant; for 16 Servers and about 60 DB's I have probably close to 200 registrations but I can find anything quickly. BTW-- The server reporting for 2k5 is awesome. Sure beats the taskpad view from EM.
Jayson Knight wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Sun, Dec 11 2005 3:12 AM
Adam: I do agree with you about the server reporting...much better, so at least they got something right! Personally, I'm ramping up on my SQLCMD.exe skills...the whole mgmt studio performance issues are driving me crazy.
protected virtual void jaysonBlog { wrote More SQL Server 2005 Management Studio Woes
on Mon, Feb 13 2006 1:50 AM

I posted
earlier about some SQL Server 2005 Management Studio (SSMS) gripes I've
come across;...
protected virtual void jaysonBlog { wrote More SQL Server 2005 Management Studio Woes
on Mon, Feb 13 2006 1:51 AM
I posted earlier about some SQL Server 2005 Management Studio (SSMS) gripes I've come across;...
protected virtual void jaysonBlog { wrote More SQL Server 2005 Management Studio Woes
on Mon, Feb 13 2006 1:58 AM

I posted
earlier about some SQL Server 2005 Management Studio (SSMS) gripes I've
come across;...
Steve wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Thu, Mar 16 2006 3:09 AM
> Microsoft, if you’re reading this (and I know you do sometimes), please back port this into VS2003, not all of us will be using VS2005 strictly on our SQL2005 databases

You can use SqlAssist inside VS2003 and VS2005 to execute/develop scripts with T-SQL intellisense.  This little addin is quite a pleasure to work with...

~Steve
Peter Wieselquist wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Wed, Apr 5 2006 8:48 PM
I agree, Jason, You're right on on every point. For so many small improvements, there's too many real showstoppers to make the switch from enterprise manager.
Tod wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Fri, Jul 7 2006 1:32 PM
Transferring objects from one server to another.. OMG..  What ever happened to Export Data, then pick the objects you want to move, like stored procedures, etc...  Now, you have to open up "Business Intelligence Studio", and make a project to move a couple stored procedures???  WTF?  Business Intelligence...  lol

What ever happend to all the easy ways to script out objects..I want to script out 5 tables and 8 stored procedures.. with all their keys, constraints, and object permissions.  A few mouse clicks in Ent manager 2000 and its done in one large script.. 30 seconds... Not in Management studio... Not to mention.. wtf is up with not automatically adding DROP statements to the scripts it does generate?  Oh wait, you have to do all the steps above twice, first for drops then for the creates then combine the scripts.

Another thing is the way all properties are changed to dropdown boxes for simple true false properties or options.  MS,  checkboxes take much less effort and are much faster and easier to read.

Double clicking objects was already touched on so I wont get into that.

Please someone tell me some company is making a third party ent manager for SQL2005.  I am to the point of rolling back to 2000. I am really hard pressed to find ONE improvement in the management studio.

Ok, my ranting is done for now.. :)
Peter wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Fri, Jul 14 2006 2:11 PM
I just wanted to chime in agreeing with all the sentiment about the new enterprise manager.

It uses a rediculously unacceptable amount of memory that just keeps getting more and more rediculous as its actually used (My PC has 4 gigs of ram)  The UI isn't well factored for general daily use at all.  I would be surprised if the people who did the interface work actually ever the necessary domain knoweldge or tried using the product themselves to get any real work done.  The interface is too generic relying too much on generic data fields and not enough on application specific realities.

To me It smacks of ... lets rewritie enterprise manager to look like Oracles as fast as we can possibly get away with.  If the enterprise manager tool  was the same or as good as SQL2000's I would have upgraded in a heartbeat as the SI feature alone is worth an upgrade from 2000.  but this is rediculous.  The database engine itself rocks and you can attach to it using 2000's QA if you use a named instance.
Tod wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Fri, Jul 14 2006 10:13 PM
One of my absolute favorite new 'features'... Debugging a stored procedure.. I use lots of large stored procedures.  Lets say you make a mistake in a 200 line SP. Ent Manager 2000 will tell you what line its on.  And you can double click it and scroll to that line number and easily find it.  Now lets talk about Management Studio's approach.   Yes, it will tell you the line number of the problem. However, when you want to view the stored procedure to find the line, you got 10-20 lines of garbage script at the top that completely makes use the line number of the error completely useless.  MS, come on... Who missed this one?
Jayson Knight wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Sat, Jul 15 2006 2:57 PM
Tod, oh man good call on that one...completely forgot about that one. TOTAL pain in the ass.
Ryan wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Wed, Mar 14 2007 8:10 AM

SQL Mgt Studio is abviously written using the bloated .Net framework.  Dot Net is bring forced down the throats of MS developers world wide, and I for one am getting sick of it.  Every .Net Framework based application I have used is SLOW and use WAY too much memory.  In the effort to make programming painless for developers, the end result is a slow ass application for the end users.

I am SO disappointed with SQL-Server 2005 and it crappy Mgt Studio, just try to configure all the damn security setting on it is nearly impossible and WHY harder that it should be; like Jayson said MS buried switches and controls so far down in the interface, that it is too time consuming to use.

I have given up on SQL 2005.  As the IT Mgr and Lead program for a wireless company I have recommended that we not upgrade to SQL 2005 and we not use Dot Net frameworks.  If Microsoft does not start retooling framework, I will be force to switch to other technologies.

ryan wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Wed, Mar 14 2007 8:12 AM

ps... I should also be forced to use spell check. :o)

Paul wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Sun, Mar 16 2008 6:11 PM

SQL 2005 from the database side has been pretty good.  However like others have said (all over the web), the tools really stink.  I can't believe the lost productivity!  I ended up rolling several of my apps back to 2000 because Management Studio provides such a horrible development /management experience.  Someone really dropped the ball on this one.  Ugggh.

Magnus wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Mon, Mar 31 2008 6:55 AM

Modifying a stored procedure opens a tab with  a "new file" name instead of just having the name of the stored procedure on the tab, which was the case in Enterprise Manager. This is extremely annoying when having several stored procedures opened at once since it's hard to tell which one is which.

This also leads to the annoying fact that when closing a modified stored procedure (you hit execute to "save" it) it opens up the save dialog as if one would wanna save the stored procedure to file as well. Gaah!

Travis wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Thu, May 22 2008 12:13 PM

I could not agree more.  This is the most unusable POS I have been forced into using in forever.  I cannot for the life of me see any reason that they left Enterprise Manager.  If you would have been able to execute arbitrary commands via EM, that would have been in my opinion nearly a perfect db tool for sql server.

I've been using mysql for over 3 years now, and I have to say that I'm not missing sql server whatsoever at this point.

Troy wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Wed, Feb 17 2010 2:25 PM

" I cannot for the life of me see any reason that they left Enterprise Manager. "   ...I think Microsoft is trying to 'homogenise' the interface  for the whole suite of products similar to this like IIS7 - great engine, but the interface sucks as with the Event Viewer in Windows 2008, all these GUIs are similar in feel, taking too many clicks etc etc

espinete wrote re: SQL 2005 Management Studio is Pathetic
on Sun, Jul 18 2010 11:42 PM

mister,

where is osqlScript ??

the link is broken

www.codeproject.com/.../osqlScript.asp

thankx

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