Aquarium Blog

Saturday, December 04, 2004

Somewhat impressed by SQL Express Manager, but not too much

I have problems connecting to local SQL Server 2000 or MSDE 2000 databases because an incorrect parameter in a call to the shared memory provider. Hopefully this will get solved when I upgrade my beta version of SQL Server 2005 to the latest (December) CTP code.

I am delighted to see that the program is really as lightweight as it should be, resource-wise. But I think it still lacks many fundamental productivity features like being able to copy an INSERT, DELETE or UPDATE script to the clipboard on a couple of mouse clicks.

I have had some lucrative datamining jobs in which the main goal was to some straight historical information from multigigabyte, badly normalized, customers billing databases. Lots of addhot queries, views, temp tables, replacements, data validation, interminable scripts, etc. For this kind of job I use a combinaton of Query Analyzer, Enterprise Manager and Access Data Projects, rocks.

Rigth now, I cannot imagine myself completing the same job either with the full fledged SQL Server Management Studio nor with its slim cousin.

I hope Express Manager will improve before version 1, but maybe Microsoft is taking the approach of making it only a toy, so to avoid the free product of competing with Studio Manager.

If this is the case: WRONG, WRONG, WRONG! (sorry, but you have to deal like this with people so smart ;). You are not competing with yourselves, but with the rest of the industry in this case. You want to ship products that are super usable and super functional, so people want to use them like crazy.

Well, maybe they are time constrained. In this case, ok, I understand.

UPDATE: From the SQL Express Manager December CTP Whitepapter:

Note Express Manager December 2004 Community Technology Preview (CTP) is not supported on a local computer that is running SQL Server 2000.

This explains that the shared memory provider is not working with SQL Server 2000. I will see later if this can be "hacked" by disabling this provider.

And yes, the rest of the whitepaper explains very well the situation. It also ask for customer feedback at their blog: http://blogs.msdn.com/sqlexpress. Isn't blog the word of the year?

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