What’s new in SQL Server Management Studio 17.3

We are excited to announce the release of SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) 17.3!

Download SSMS 17.3 and review the Release Notes to get started.

SSMS 17.3 provides support for almost all feature areas on SQL Server 2008 through the latest SQL Server 2017, which is now generally available.

In addition to enhancements and bug fixes, SSMS 17.3 comes with two new exciting features:

  • Import Flat File Wizard
  • XEvent Profiler

Import Flat File Wizard

The Import Flat File Wizard streamlines the import experience of flat files (.csv, .txt) with an intelligent framework, requiring minimal user intervention or specialized domain knowledge.

A common task for a user is to import a flat file to a SQL table. The existing SSMS Import Data wizard provides a much broader set of import capabilities and configuration for defining SQL Server Integration Services packages. This can be useful in many cases, but for the simple task of importing a flat file into a table, a more streamlined experience is desirable. There is a need for a tool or technology that simplifies the import experience by reducing the amount of user configuration required to properly import complex flat file structures.

New import technology

To address this need, we are using the Microsoft Program Synthesis using Examples (PROSE) SDK. This SDK allows us to take raw semi-structured data and identify patterns in it to perform predictive file splitting, helping the wizard “learn” the structure of a flat file to infer column names, types, delimiters, and more.

This simplifies the import flat file experience by requiring the user to only provide an input file and unique file name, and the wizard takes care of the rest.

Try it now

Try the Import Flat File Wizard yourself by following a step-by-step tutorial.

To learn more about the Import Flat File Wizard, check out my demo for Channel9:

XEvent Profiler

The XEvent Profiler is an easy to launch and customizable SSMS feature that quickly displays a live target view of extended events.

In SSMS, the existing extended events functionality already provides a flexible definition of sessions and views, but lacks the “quick view” capability of SQL Profiler. XEvent Profiler generates that view just as fast as SQL Profiler, while also allowing for view customization that can be shared with other SSMS users as a *.viewsettings file.

The diagram below illustrates how quick it is to view extended events in your database.

Try it now

Try the XEvent Profiler yourself by following a step-by-step tutorial.

We challenge you to try out this new feature over SQL Server Profiler. If there are any gaps that require you to use SQL Server Profiler over XEvent Profiler, feel free to comment on this blog. We hope to fill those gaps in future releases.

Contact us

We are open to any questions, feedback, or any feature suggestions for future releases. Please contact us using our form, or tweet to our team’s engineering manager @sqltoolsguy.