Monday, December 28, 2009

Alt + F1

This post is by far the silliest post by me but again very useful and handy :)
This one has been the most popular tip among by developers and no indexing/query tuning tip impressed them this much. So whats that brilliant(!) tip ?

On a Query Analyzer/Management Studio (SSMS), If you want to find the properties of the table just select the table name and press ALT + F1. Provides the Columns in the table,constraints,indexes,Identity column details etc. Actually it provides the result of sp_help. Grab a look at the picture provided below.

Just a word of caution. Length column expressed by sp_help is size of a column in bytes.So for a nvarchar column length 100 means that column can hold a max of 50 characters only. If you are used to seeing column properties from design view in Enterprise manager/SSMS then can fall to this trap.Though all of us know about the nchar/nvarchar's 2 byte per character storage its just one of those things which one needs to bear in mind while using this shortcut key.

Other Shortcuts available by default are

* ctrl + 1 -> sp_who
* ctrl + 2 -> sp_lock

You can customize it, as it is available under Tools -> Customize in Query Analyzer and Tools->options in SSMS.Picture provided below.

Note that you can even add queries. I have added a look up on sysprocesses to have a quick look on whats happeining on my server and sp_spaceused for approximate row counts :)

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