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I am trying to access a SQL Server database housed on a ISP. Normally one would simply install an express version of SQL server and use the Management Studio therein. Yeah, not me!

Are there any third party tools that will allow me to manage my database? Lightweight ones would be the best but I'm not that picky. :)

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Why don't you want to use SQL Server Management Studio Express? –  joeqwerty Oct 2 '09 at 18:19
Because I like options. :) –  Craig Oct 2 '09 at 22:41
Can you discuss what you've found lacking or otherwise undesirable about SSMS? –  mfinni Jun 18 '10 at 19:32

7 Answers 7

up vote 3 down vote accepted

If your ISP blocks incoming requests to SQL ports and you can't RDP into the box then you're relinquished to something they provide, which is probably going to be one of the crappy web front-ends that are out there.

That said, and if you insist on not using SSMS Express, have a look at

  • Query Express (as recommended by Scott Hanselman! "Wow, a Query Analyzer look-alike that doesn't suck, doesn't need an install, is wicked fast, is free and is only 100k. Pinch me, I'm dreaming.")
  • SQuirreL SQL Client (maybe not ideal if you're not keen on talking to SQL Server via jdbc, though)
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Yeah but ADOQuery will actually give you editability of tables you query and its a smaller executable. I tried Query Express and it was all read-only. –  djangofan Jun 21 '10 at 15:53

If you are not picky, why not use Management Studio? Its free and it works....

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I'd be very worried if you can connect to the SQL Server instance remotely. That is, without using Citrix, say, or their web UI.

If you do remote in, then you'll have SSMS somewhere (or SQuirrel etc)

Seriously: either use what the ISP provides or change ISP...

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try aqua data studio from http://www.aquafold.com/ it's jdbc based and talks to SQL server but also to Oracle, Mysql, Posgres, etc...

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Personally, I'd still be using SSMS... but if you really don't want to, apart from the other good alternatives listed, you could consider a web-based app like SQL Web Administrator.

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We have used SQL Developer for certain edge case functionality (like exporting all of the data from a table to a .sql file with all the records as insert statements) but it works well as a standard SQL management application as well.

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There is a program called ADOQuery that is a great way to get quick connectivity before you have installed SQL Server Management Studio. It only weights 1KB. The smallest that you'll find.

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