SSMS Tip: Portable User Settings

I’m a creature of habit. With the software tools that I use, I like to have everything in the same place every time, even if I’m working on a machine I don’t normally use. That’s especially true with SQL Server Management Studio, where the sheer number of buttons and options can force one to hunt for the feature they need. Fortunately, SSMS allows you to use your favorite settings wherever you go, by allowing you to specify a common settings file.

Don’t move my cheese

As you can tell, I prefer a very simple set of menu options, distilled to only the essential things I use very frequently.

To keep those and my other preference settings with me when I move from one machine to another, I use the team settings file option under Import and Export Settings to use this predefined settings file.

When configured as shown, Management Studio will use the specified team settings file rather than the default settings. This allows you to keep your SSMS preferences with you without having to reconfigure every SSMS installation on which you work. I have taken this a step further by putting this team settings file on my Dropbox, which allows me to modify it on one computer and have the changes shown up almost instantly on every other machine I use.

When you have all of your SSMS settings configured like you like them, spend 5 minutes to share this file and use it on the other machines where you use SSMS. I suspect there are a lot of fellow creatures of habit who will benefit from this tip.

About the Author

Tim Mitchell
Tim Mitchell is a data architect and consultant who specializes in getting rid of data pain points. Need help with data warehousing, ETL, reporting, or training? If so, contact Tim for a no-obligation 30-minute chat.

2 Comments on "SSMS Tip: Portable User Settings"

  1. Hi, Tim.
    Do you have a bug being reproduced for the latest version of sssss 18.4.1 when you select team settings and press the ok button, they are not saved?

  2. Thanks Tim – I’d never seen that and it’s exactly what I was looking for!

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