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SQL Server 2005 T-SQL debugging alternatives

With no T-SQL debugger in SQL Server Management Studio you can use Visual Studio 2005's T-SQL debugger, but if you're not a fan of step-debugging, SQL Server 2005 expert Adam Machanic has detailed some alternatives.

I recently read your response to the Query Analyzer having been replaced by the new SQL Server Management Studio. As it does not include a T-SQL debugger, what do you recommend as an alternative?
Unfortunately, you are correct: SQL Server Management Studio does not include the T-SQL debugger that was present in SQL Server Query Analyzer. Microsoft's solution is that developers wishing to debug T-SQL should use Visual Studio 2005, which does include a T-SQL debugger.

Personally, I am not a fan of step-debugging T-SQL at all. I find it a cumbersome process. The lack of visibility...

into temporary tables and table variables makes it less-than-ideal for most debugging scenarios I've encountered. I discussed some alternatives in an article Debugging with Macros and Assertions, which I wrote for SQL Server Professional magazine.

This was last published in June 2006

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