Quickly Locate Text in a Query Window in SSMS

Wow - long title.


Anyway, my good friend Bill Ramos and I were chatting just the other day. He's a the guy at Microsoft that took my old responsibilities for SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS), and we were swapping tips and tricks. He showed me one that he uses that I like a lot, so I thought I would share that here.

The situation is that I sometimes edit large T-SQL scripts. Sometimes I want to find a word or series of characters, but I don't like to keep searching for them all the time. I want something like the new "search on this page" feature in IE.

What he showed me was to right-click in an icon bar at the top of the screen. From there you click "Customize" and then locate the "Edit" menu on the left hand side of the panel that shows up. Then in the right-hand side of that list grab the "Go To Find Combo" and drag it to your icon bar wherever you would like it. Then click the "Close" button.

Now just open a large file and then click in that combo box. Enter some text, and as you type, the system jumps to the words you fill out. Very handy!

Comments (4)
  1. PaulMest says:

    This sounds a lot like "incremental search" which is part of Visual Studio.  Just hit "ctrl + I" and start typing.  If you want to find the next match, just keep hitting "ctrl + I" and it will cycle through the matches one by one.


  2. NotAlreadyTaken says:

    It’s not clear to me what problem is being solved here.

    How is this better than just typing cntrl-F?  That way, your hand doesn’t have to leave the keyboard before typing the search string.

    I guess the combo-box in the toolbar avoids having the Find and Replace dialog box in your way (blocking the context of the string).  

    Otherwise, is there some other feature this adds that I’m missing?

  3. NotAlreadyTaken says:


    I was in 2005 where the combo box didn’t do the search incrementally.

    cntrl-I works great there, though.

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