24 April 2012

Ever wondered what the Object Explorer Details window is for?

Typically, when I install SQL Server Management Studio and run it for the first time, the first thing I do is to close the Object Explorer Details window. After all, it doesn’t seem to serve a useful purpose, duplicating information that already exists in the Object Explorer.

However, I have discovered that it has one important redeeming capability, the ability to allow multi-selection by holding the ctrl or shift key depressed during the selection.

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Why is this useful?

If I want to rename an object, or indeed make any textual modification to a number of stored procedures, I can simply script as drop/create, do a search/replace, and click execute to apply the changes.

If I need to use SQL Prompt’s Format SQL feature to format all the stored procedures in my database, instead of scripting out each of them individually and applying the changes, which would be impractical for all by the smallest databases, using the Object Explorer Details pane I can script them all to a single query window, apply my formatting changes to my entire stash of procs, and execute the entire script in one fell swoop.

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No doubt there are other benefits to multi-selection, or indeed the Object Explorer Details pane. If you know of any, please post a comment on this blog post!

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David Atkinson

View all articles by David Atkinson