Registering a MS SQL Server

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In order to register an MS SQL Server, you need to fill out the dialog below, reached via the Enterprise Manager and the Register Server button. For SQL Express and LocalDB instructions, see the Notes below.


Register an MS SQL Server


Database Workbench needs the following information:


An user-defined alias name for the server - this is only used inside Database Workbench.


An Enterprise Manager folder for grouping your server registrations.



Hostname or IP address of the machine where the MS SQL Server process is running. If this is your local machine use (local).



With multiple SQL Server instances running on the same machine, specify an instance name here.



Database Workbench supports the TCP/IP and Named Pipes protocol to connect to SQL Server, by default SQL Express supports Named Pipes only.



If you're not running SQL Server Browser at the server, you can enter a (custom) port number here, leave it to [autodetect] otherwise.


Pipe Name

If you're not running SQL Server Browser at the server, you can enter a (custom) pipe name here, leave it to [autodetect] otherwise.


Authentication type

Either Windows (NT) build in authentication, or the special MS SQL Server authentication.



The username to use for MS SQL Server authentication. This username will be used for any server specific tasks - it's recommended you use the "sa" user here.



The password to use for MS SQL Server authentication.


If you click OK, Database Workbench will test the connection - if this succeeds, the server will be registered and added to the Servers node in the Enterprise Manager. At first, Database Workbench will try to use SQL Server Native Client to connect, if you don't have this installed, it will use MDAC.


Database Workbench then connects to your MS SQL Server and will list the available Databases. For using a database with Database Workbench, there are several options available.



If you're trying to connect to SQL Server Express, make sure you either enable TCP/IP in the SQL Server Configuration Manager as it is disabled by default, or use the Named Pipes protocol, set it to the proper pipe name. In the case of Named Pipes, also make sure the service is running under valid credentials in order to set up a named pipe connection. For information about connection errors involving Named Pipes, see or
For more information on the SQL Server Browser service, see
When using LocalDB, here's the steps you need to take:
- make sure to create a 'shared instance' of LocalDB, see
- use the sqllocaldb.exe command line tool to request info and note the Instance pipe name.
- in the Server Registration dialog, use . (that's a dot) as the Host, nothing as the Instance and use Named Pipes for the protocol. As the Pipe Name, use the Instance pipe name you've retrieved in the previous step, minus the np:\\ prefix.
- click OK to test the connection.