A Guide To Azure Data Studio


We used to utilize SQL Server Management Studio(SSMS) as the most common Graphical User Interface tool for administering our SQL Server instances in our data center or in the cloud. SSMS may also be used to build our database projects, which involves creating or altering database objects as well as viewing and modifying the data stored in these databases. You can simply design database components and view/modify data in database tables with Azure Data Studio. It enables you to execute T-SQL queries, inspect, amend, and export the results to a variety of useful formats, including CSV, Excel, XML, and JSON, which can be processed by your applications or imported by another database engine.

Topics to be Covered?

  • What is Azure Data Studio
  • Why do we need this Azure Data Studio Tool when we have SSMS
  • Azure Data Studio Overview
  • Installation Setup
  • Work with Azure Data Studio

What is Azure Data Studio?

For database specialists who work with local and cloud platforms on Windows, macOS, and Linux, Azure Data Studio is one of the best-known and most popular options. This software provides a lightweight, modern environment for developing SQL code with a variety of built-in features. Its purpose is to make users' daily work easier and to improve their professional experience over time.

Why do we need this Azure Data Studio Tool when we have SSMS?

Database Plays a major role in any of the enterprise applications in order to work with Databases we need a dedicated tool like SSMS for SQL Database and My SQL Workbench for MySQL Database and so on. Let's take an example if you are an SQL Developer or You need to run a query to check the data you might ask... Why do I need this Azure Data Studio Tool when I have SSMS in my machine... Below is the list of reasons for using Azure Data Studio.

  1. You're a Mac or Linux user.
  2. 2019 Big Data Clusters require you to connect and collaborate.
  3. You'll need something lighter than SSMS.
  4. Work with JSON, XML, or Excel files more effortlessly.
  5. The terminal that is integrated. You can use command-line programs like Bash, PowerShell, and others.

Azure Data Studio Overview

  • If you're wondering if Azure Data Studio can replace the default SSMS offering, the answer is currently no. SSMS has more features. Despite this, Azure Data Studio, originally known as SQL Operations Studio, is superior in several ways. To be safe, familiarise yourself with a detailed comparison of Azure Data Studio vs SSMS to discover both tools' strengths and limitations.
  • The main advantage of Azure Data Studio is that it is cross-platform, meaning it can be used on systems other than Windows OS.
  • You'll have access to all of the tools you'll need to write and run SQL queries, as well as analyze their output. To refer to the results later, you can save them in TXT, JSON, or Excel formats.
  • In addition, you may modify data, manage database connections, and inspect database objects. Another great feature of Azure Data Studio is the ability to create notebooks and use them to write SQL, Spark, Python, and Scala scripts.
  • A rich query editor based on IntelliSense is included in the solution (more about it later). SQL code snippets provide a handy backdrop for ensuring valid SQL syntax for databases and objects like tables, views, stored procedures, users, roles, and so on. It also guarantees that all database items are updated.

List of Other helpful Features

  • Git Source Control Manager is built-in.
  • Insights and a Custom Dashboard
  • Database Object Definitions
  • Visualization of query results in a flash

Installation Setup

If you have already having SSMS installed in your machine then you have Azure Data Studio in handy or if you need to install Azure Data Studio Tool as a separate visit the official page and click on the link as per the below image.

Go to the Downloads section on your local computer where you will find the Azure Data Studio Extension. Double Click on it to install the tool on your pc

Read the License Agreement carefully and choose the I accept the Agreement option and click on the Next button as shown in the below image

Click on the Next button.

Work with Azure Data Studio

1. Setup the SQL Connection

Click on the New connection option in the top left menu and add the connection details to fetch the databases under that server.

Once after the successful connection.Right-click on any one of the databases and select the New Query option where it will open the new query window to perform the SQL commands as shown in the below image.

2. Filter the Data from the Output

Azure Data Studio is giving an option where we can easily filter the data without being performing any additional SQL commands. It helps in reducing the time for filtering the data in one or another way.

Click on the down arrow button where you want to filter the actual data from the result and choose the respective option and click on the Ok button it will result in the filtered data as shown in the below image.

And the icon right after the EmployeeName in the result set indicates that the column is in filtered mode.

3. Data Export and Visualization

Now let's talk about the options which are shown on the right side of the result set. Please go through with each option as mentioned in the below image.

Azure Data Studio

4. Data Visualization in Charts

In this option, we can visualize our data in the charts where we have different options in the dropdown like Pie, Bar, Image, Line e.t.c and we can save that in the image as well as shown in the below image.

5. Export As Notebook

Azure Data Studio Notebooks are a new feature of Azure Data studio, with which you can work on queries, queries results, text, code, and images to create custom documents that are tailored to the needs of your work. These documents have been found in demand in industries relying heavily on databases- for these companies they have saved hours in productivity by simplifying sharing recommendations.

Notebook Overview

+Cell - To add the code snippet or the Text snippet.

Run All -  To run all the queries which are sitting in that notebook.

kernel - The language you write the code and the engine that will execute it, for our case, T-SQL.


The above article demonstrates a detailed overview of the Azure Data Studio and how to use make use of it with all the options available in the Data studio.

Thank you for reading, please let me know your questions, thoughts, or feedback in the comments section. I appreciate your feedback and encouragement.

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