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SQL Server Connection Strings

The purpose of this short post is to demonstrate a simple method of generating an accurate SQL Server connection string for your SQL Server servers and databases.  This tip was first showed to me by a friend of mine, Paul Blackwell, a while back and I wanted to share it with you here.

As pre-requisite to this tip you need to be using a windows based operating system.

In order to build our SQL Server connection string we need to clear all open windows and have the desktop in front of us…

so click the <show desktop> button

<Right click> on the desk top

Select <New> <Text Document>


Call it <sqlconn>

Open the new text document called <sqlconn>on your desktop

When the document is open select <File><Save As>

Keep the file name the same but change the <save as type> to all files.

After the file name add the extension .udl like in the screen shot below and click <Save>


There will now be a second item on the desktop called <sqlconn> and will look similar to this (depending on your version of windows)


Double click on the icon will take you a data link connection page like the following.

Select the <Provider> tab and select <Microsoft OLE DB Provider for SQL Server> click <Next>


On the <Connection> tab enter the details of the server you want to connect to including any connection details. I always like test the connection too


Click <OK>

The will take you back to the desktop…

The final step to get the code for your SQL Server Connection string…

<Right Click > on the .UDL file <sqlconn>
Select <open with> and choose notepad
And the file that opens should contain the following code:

; Everything after this line is an OLE DB initstring
Provider=SQLOLEDB.1;Integrated Security=SSPI;Persist Security Info=False;Initial Catalog=RBBS;Data Source=localhost

You can you use this method to create a number of connection strings, in this tip we have looked at generating code for SQL Server connection string but it can also be used for host of other connection strings including Analysis Services and SSAS.


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