[sql-server] SQL Server Management Studio alternatives to browse/edit tables and run queries

I was wondering if there are any alternatives to Microsoft's SQL Server Management Studio?

Not there's anything wrong with SSMS, but sometimes it just seem too big an application where all I want todo is browse/edit tables and run queries.

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Seems that no one mentioned Query Express (http://www.albahari.com/queryexpress.aspx) and a fork Query ExPlus (also link at the bottom of http://www.albahari.com/queryexpress.aspx)

BTW. First URL is the home page of Joseph Albahari who is the author of LINQPad (check out this killer tool)



Oracle has a free program called SQL Developer which will work with Microsoft SQL Server as well as Oracle & MySQL. When accessing SQL Server, however, Oracle SQL Developer is only intended to enable an easy migration to Oracle, so your SQL Server database is essentially read-only.


You can still install and use Query Analyzer from previous SQL Server versions.


vim + dbext :)


There is an express version on SSMS that has considerably fewer features but still has the basics.


How about Embarcadero Rapid SQL Really good but kind of expensive.


TOAD for MS SQL looks pretty good. I've never used it personally but I have used Quest's other products and they're solid.


If you are already spending time in Visual Studio, then you can always use the Server Explorer to connect to any .Net compliant database server.

Provided you're using Professional or greater, you can create and edit tables and databases, run queries, etc.


I have been using Atlantis SQL Enywhere, a free software, for almost 6 months and has been working really well. Works with SQL 2005 and SQL 2008 versions. I am really impressed with its features and keyboard shortcuts are similar to VS, so makes the transition really smooth to a new editor.

Some of the features that are worth mentioning:

  • Intellisense that actually works when using multiple tables and joins with aliases
  • Suggestion of joins when using multiple tables (reduces time on typing, really neat)
  • Rich formatting of sql code, AutoIndent using Ctrl K, Ctrl D.
  • Better representation of SQL plans
  • Highlights variables declarations while they are used.
  • Table definition on mouse hover.

All these features have saved me lot of time.