This is the final post in a series covering changes in SSMS 19. Please review Part 1 and Part 2 for details about Microsoft.Data.Sqlclient, MSAL, removal of the SQL Vulnerability Assessment, and more. This post discusses new features in SSMS 19.1, as well as an update about feedback items, and the future of SSMS.
First up, the Always Encrypted team continues to extend the capabilities of Always Encrypted and in SSMS 19.1 they have introduced support for secure enclaves and in-place encryption via the Always Encrypted Wizard. There are updates related to column selection, master key configuration page, and in-place encryption settings. You can read more information in the team’s blog post, Always Encrypted Wizard now supports secure enclaves and in-place encryption.
SQL Azure Managed Instance
The Managed Instance team has also been hard at work and added a Network Checker wizard to SSMS 19.1 which permits testing the network connection and ports prior to creating a Managed Instance link. The also added advanced network troubleshooting capability during the existing link creation wizard to help troubleshoot network connectivity issues when link creation is in progress. And finally, they introduced the ability to view the status of the Distributed Transaction Coordinator (DTC) service for an Azure SQL Managed Instance so users can determine if it’s enabled or not.
Restore from S3-Compatible Object Storage
In SQL Server 2022, support for backup to and restore from S3-compatible object storage was introduced, and in SSMS 19.1 we have added support for restoring from S3 for both Azure SQL Managed Instance and on-premises databases. The Select backup devices dialog now includes S3 URL in the Backup media type drop down:
Screenshot of S3 URL option for Backup media type
Once Add is selected, the S3 backup file location dialog appears, where the virtual host URL, Secret Key ID and Access Key ID for the S3-compatible object storage can be entered:
Every so often we like to remind the community of the feedback site, where you can report issues and suggestions for SSMS. If you haven’t visited in a while, take note of the Groups section on the right side, under Filters. We now have a group for Tooling! Any requests or problems related to SSMS will be tagged with the Tooling group (this is done internally, there is nothing for you to do when you submit an issue).
Before you log anything new, we would appreciate it if you would search within the Tooling group of the SQL forum to confirm whether the issue or request already exists. If it does not, then create a new item. Please, please, make sure that any bug logged has steps to recreate it. This is extremely important. If we don’t understand how to recreate the problem, then we don’t know how to fix it.
If the issue has already been reported, or the suggestion submitted, please upvote it and/or add additional context. Both the upvote and the context are very important. If someone logs a bug for SSMS, and hundreds of people upvote it, this helps us gauge the number of users impacted. When users comment to explain how a change would be helpful and what benefits it would provide, this helps us understand its value across potentially multiple real-world scenarios. Both votes and comments are useful as we triage issues and requests and determine what we can address in a release. We read every item submitted related to SSMS, every comment, and also reply.
If you’ve followed all the posts in this series and have stayed to the end, please award yourself 41,872 internet points. As an additional bonus, we’d like to share information about the future of SSMS. Any time we present a session related to the Data Tools for SQL we discuss the roadmap for SSMS, but we realize not everyone might see those sessions!
We have not deprecated SSMS
You may have noticed there’s a lot of activity related to Azure Data Studio, including regular releases and a strong investment in new functionality. However, there is room for both SSMS and ADS in the SQL Data Tools space, and on any person’s machine. We will share more about the vision for Azure Data Studio and its co-existence with SSMS, but rest assured, we continue to invest in SSMS.
We are not planning to have another 19.x release
That’s right, it is our plan to have 19.1 as the last 19.x release. We reserve the right to have another release if we determine it’s necessary. But please don’t plan on it! And the reason is…
We are turning our attention to SSMS 20, which will include three major changes
Migration to Microsoft.Data.Sqlclient 5.x
Migration to the VS 2022 shell (which also means SSMS will become a 64-bit application)
New connection dialog
We do not have a release date for SSMS 20 – but we will have multiple preview releases first, just as we did with SSMS 19. The three changes listed above require significant work, and the community should not expect any preview before Q4 of this year (2023) at the very earliest. Again, we reserve the right to not have a preview in that timeframe.
Our goal in sharing the roadmap for SSMS is to help you understand why you may not see much from us in the coming months and clarify that SSMS is not going away. Please make sure to tell your friends and colleagues, and thanks for reading!