The number of tools and features available in SSMS is extensive and can be daunting when you first enter the environment. Remember that you can customize this environment and hide many of the windows that are displayed. You can start with a fairly simple SSMS configuration that includes the Object Explorer and a Query Editor window. This allows you to accomplish a majority of your SQL Server tasks. As you become more familiar with the environment, you can introduce new tools and features to help improve your overall productivity.
The discussion of SSMS does not end with this chapter. Further details related to SSMS are covered throughout this book. You can use the new features described in this chapter as a starting point and look to other chapters for more detailed discussion of database features that are accessible through SSMS.
Chapter 4 looks at the SQL Server utilities that can be run from the command prompt. These tools allow you to perform some of the same tasks that are available in SSMS. The ability to launch these utilities from the command line can be useful when you’re automating tasks or accessing SQL Server when graphical user interface tools such as SSMS are not available.