Searching made easier with SSMS 2016

SQL Server Management Studio 2016 now uses Visual Studio 2015 isolated shell. This version of SSMS works with all the versions of SQL Server starting from SQL Server 2005 – SQL Server 2016. The earlier versions of SSMS – 2012 and 2014 were based on the Visual Studio 2010 shell.

With SSMS 2016 now being powered by Visual Studio 2015, the user interface looks very similar to Visual Studio 2015 and brings in a lot of productivity improvements.

In this article, we will go through one of the features in SSMS 2016 – ‘Quick Launch’.

Quick Launch greatly helps in making the developers productive in the IDE by helping them to search features and options inside SSMS.

Now you need not remember or even know how to enable/disable/modify a particular feature. You need not browse through the menu options trying to locate an option. Quick Launch – the search tool – does it all for you!

You now have a handy way to quickly navigate to any options/commands without having to remember any shortcuts or digging into the SSMS menu.

In the top right corner of the SSMS IDE, you will see a text box — that is ‘Quick Launch’, which searches through the SSMS menu items and options.

All you need to do is to enter a search string in the ‘Quick Launch’ box about any feature you want to access inside the SQL Server Management Studio & you will see the results.


Another nice thing about this feature is that all the searches are ‘contains’ operations – so as you type in your string in the ‘Quick Launch’ box, it will start displaying results at runtime.



You do not need to have a SQL Server 2016 license to install SSMS 2016 – it is absolutely free and is all together a separate install than the entire SQL Server setup.

SSMS is an independent web installer and can be downloaded from –

I would highly recommend all developers and DBAs to have it installed in your machines and start leveraging the productivity enhancements.

To learn more about the other Productivity Enhancements in SQL Server Management Studio, please refer the link below, where I have noted all the new features in SSMS 2016 –

SQL Server Management Studio 2016 Productivity Enhancements

Categories: SQL Server, SQL Server 2016, SQL Tips

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