Software Update: SQL Server Management Studio 18.5

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Microsoft has released version 18.5 of SQL Server Management Studio, often abbreviated to SSMS. With SSMS you can manage a Microsoft SQL environment, for example an on-premise SQL Server, but also an Azure SQL Data Warehouse in the cloud. It provides tools for the configuration, monitoring and deployment of the various data tier components. You can also assemble queries and scripts. The corresponding announcement looks like this:

What’s new in 18.5

  • Analysis Services – Added support for Power BI endpoint in Analysis Services – matching functionality of Azure Analysis Services.
  • Analysis Services – Profiler: added support for Analysis Services Trace Definition 15.1.
  • Data Classification – Added a button to the VA scan result view, in order to remediate data classification rule by going to the data classification pane.
  • Data Classification – Added support for sensitivity rank in Data Classification.
  • Hyperscale – Added support for Import Data-Tier Application (.bacpac) to SQL Azure HyperScale.
  • Integration Services – Support executing SSIS Package from file system in MI Agent Job.
  • Integration Services – Made user-friendly improvements in configuring Azure-enabled DTExec to invoke SSIS package executions on Azure-SSIS Integration Runtime.
  • Integration Services – Support connecting Azure-SSIS integration runtime and managing or executing SSIS packages in package stores.
  • Integration Services – Support migrating on-premises SSIS agent jobs to ADF pipelines and triggers.
  • Integration Services – Made an improvement for the user experience of exporting SSIS projects from SSIS DB. Compared with the old Export, which loaded and upgraded packages in the SSIS project, the new version-independent Export won’t load and upgrade packages in the SSIS project. Instead, it keeps packages in the projects as they are in SSIS DB except changing protection level to EncryptSensitiveWithUserKey.
  • SMO/Scripting – Added new DwMaterializedViewDistribution property to View object.
  • SMO/Scripting – Removed support for Feature Restriction (this preview feature has been removed from SQL Azure and SQL on-prem).
  • SMO/Scripting – Added Notebook as a destination for Generate Scripts wizard.
  • SMO/Scripting – Added support for SQL On Demand.
  • SMO/Scripting – SQL Assessment API – Platform, Name, and engineEdition fields can now contain usual comma-separated lists (platform: [Windows, Linux]), not only regular expressions (platform: /Windows|Linux/)
  • SMO/Scripting – SQL Assessment API – Added 13 assessment rules. For more details, go to GitHub).

Bug fixes in 18.5

  • Accessibility – SSIS ADF / New Schedule: fixed an issue where the focus order is not logical in the scan mode of narrator under New Schedule wizard.
  • Accessibility – Stretch database wizard: fixed an issue where the screen reader does not inform about the name of the query table when providing information about the table.
  • Analysis Services – Fix cached connection when scripting in AS with AAD connection.
  • Always On – Fixed an issue where the first database added to Always On AG does not join correctly.
  • Always On – Fixed an issue where an error was displayed when trying to display the dashboard when connected to a Big Data Cluster endpoint.
  • Auditing – Fixed an issue where the Audit logs merges window crashes when there’s a folder with an empty name in the root folder of the storage account.
  • Auditing – Fixed an issue where the Audit logs merge window doesn’t show all servers when there are too many items in the root of the container.
  • Data Clarification – Fixed an issue where the Data Classification wizard won’t open for databases with large number of tables.
  • Data Clarification – We are now enforcing different GUIDs for every label/infoType and GUID’s structure in the validation process.
  • Data Clarification – Remove classification process in SqlServer2019.
  • Data Clarification – Correcting the previous validation tests (adding rank, removing the illegal property InformationTypes) and adding new ones for the first two points.
  • Data Clarification – The button just above the classified columns table now minimizes the recommendations panel, as it says.
  • General SSMS – Updating the version of MSODBC and MSOLEDB drivers.
  • General SSMS – Addressed at least two common sources hangs and crashes in SSMS.
  • General SSMS – Addressed one more case where Restore dialog hangs when selecting the Browse button.
  • General SSMS – Fixed New Database GUI for SQL On Demand.
  • General SSMS – Fixed New External Table… and New External Data Source… templates for SQL On Demand.
  • General SSMS – Fixed database properties, connection properties, hiding reports and rename for SQL On Demand.
  • General SSMS – Always Encrypted: Fixed an issue where the key name dropdown becomes read-only on selecting new enclave enabled key.
  • General SSMS – Cleaned up the Database Property Options grid, which was showing two Miscellaneous Categories.
  • General SSMS – Fixed an issue where the scroll bar started from middle in “Database Properties Options” grid.
  • General SSMS – Fixed an issue that was causing SSMS to crash when opening .sql file while connected to Analysis Services server.
  • General SSMS – Connection Dialog: fixed an issue where unchecking the “Remember Password” does not work.
  • General SSMS – Fixed an issue where credentials associated to Server/Users are always remembered. See UserVoice 37875172.
  • General SSMS – Fixed issue where occasionally Editor windows was not properly refreshed. This is achieved by disabling the hardware acceleration in Tools > Options > Environment. See UserVoice 37474042.
  • General SSMS – Fixed an issue where Azure Active Directory authentication was not working through a proxy.
  • High DPI/Scaling – Fixed an issue where the controls on the Index properties could be incorrectly rendered (buttons overlapping grid). See UserVoice 36030424.
  • High DPI/Scaling – Fixed multiple issues in Database Properties dialog, which might show clipped controls on 4K monitors.
  • High DPI/Scaling – Fixed Publication and Subscription Wizards on 4k displays.
  • High DPI/Scaling – Minor fix on New Audit Server Specification page.
  • High DPI/Scaling – Fixed 4k display issue on High Availability Wizard.
  • High DPI/Scaling – Fixed an issue where the user was not able to add a target in an Xevent New Session window + Set Session Event Filters in Xevent Session Wizard when display scaling at 125%.
  • High DPI/Scaling – Fixing an issue where controls on the Backup Database to URL UI render out of sight under scaling above 100%.
  • Import flat file – Updated Flat File Import Wizard to allow check all for the allow null column. See UserVoice 38027137.
  • Object Explorer – Fixed an issue where Object Explorer could display incorrect information when connection strings are used to connect in Connection Dialog.
  • Object Explorer – Fixed an issue where OE was slow in expanding tables for databases with several thousands of tables (20k+).
  • Query Store UI – Fixed TRC report calculate execution count (for wait time metric) as the sum of execution counts for each individual wait category, which is incorrect. But for a single execution of query it will be registered for each of the wait category the query waited for. So, if TRC just sums it across the wait category it will bloat the execution count. Actually it should be the Max across the wait_category.
  • Query Store UI – Fixed TRC detailed view returns incorrect data when result set is filtered on top x. This happens because the query uses multiple common table expressions, which are then joined together to create the final result set. If top x is pushed into CTE, it sometimes can filters out the required rows. This can sometimes make the result set non-deterministic. The fix is ​​to not push top x clause to CTEs.
  • Query Store UI – Fixed Plan summary in both – grid or chart view needs last query execution wait time. Absence of this column is breaking the query. This change set will add this column to the wait stats CTE.
  • ShowPlan – Improved how SSMS displays estimated row counts for operators with multiple executions: (1) Modified Estimated Number of Rows in SSMS to “Estimated Number of Rows Per Execution”; (2) Added a new property Estimated Number of Rows for All Executions; (3) Modify the property Actual Number of Rows to Actual Number of Rows for All Executions.
  • SQL Agent – Fixed an issue where trying to edit a SQL Agent job step could have resulted in the SSMS UI freezing. SSMS is now allowing viewing (View button) an output_file whose name is tokenized (at least for the simple macros/tokens supported by SQL Agent that are not determined at runtime). Also SSMS is not disabling the “View” button when the user does not have access to the file (as far as SQL permissions go). See UserVoice 39063124.
  • SQL Agent – Fixed the tab ordering on the Job Step page.
  • SQL Agent – Reversed the position of the “Next” and “Previous” buttons on the Job Step page to put them in a logical order.
  • SQL Agent – Adjusted the Job Schedule window to not clip the UI.
  • SMO/Scripting – Fixed database scripting for SQL On Demand.
  • SMO/Scripting – Removing explicit sqlvariant cast (illegal T-SQL syntax for SqlOnDemand) which fixes scripting for SqlOnDemand.
  • SMO/Scripting – Fixed an issue where FILLFACTOR on indexes for SQL Azure was skipped.
  • SMO/Scripting – Fixed an issue related to scripting External objects.
  • SMO/Scripting – Fixed an issue where Generate Scripts was not allowing choosing the scripting option for Extended Properties against SQL DB. Also, fixed the scripting of such extended properties.
  • SMO/Scripting – SQL Assessment API – Wrong help link in XTPHashAvgChainBuckets rule.
  • XEvent UI – Fixed an issue here items in the grid where being selected on hovering. See UserVoice 38262124 and UserVoice 37873921.

Known issues (18.5)

  • Database Diagram created from SSMS running on machine A cannot be modified from machine B (SSMS crashes). See UserVoice 37992649 for more details.
  • When importing or exporting packages in Integration Services or exporting packages in Azure-SSIS Integration Runtime, scripts are lost for packages containing script tasks/components. A workaround is to remove the folder C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio 18\Common7\IDE\CommonExtensions\MSBuild.
  • New Server Audit Specification dialog may cause SSMS to crash with an access violation error.
  • SSMS Extensions using SMO would need to be recompiled targeting the new SMO v160 (package will be available on right after SSMS 18.5 is released)

Version number 18.5
Release status Final
Operating systems Windows Server 2012, Windows 8, Windows 10, Windows Server 2016
Website Microsoft
License type Freeware
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