It is quite useful to be able to manage your SQL Server databases using a Web-based tool. Doing so gives you access to your data from wherever you can pop open a browser. Microsoft has a utility called the SQL Server Web Data Administrator that you can use with any version of SQL Server version 7 SP2 and above; and on Windows 2000 SP4, Server 2003, Windows XP or XP SP1.
There are two versions of the Web Data Administrator, one that runs on Internet Information Server (IIS) and the second that uses a Microsoft.NET Cassini Web server. Cassini is a shared source Web server that can be used by developers to add functionality to their programs.
To download the IIS version go to: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=C039A798-C57A-419E-ACBC-2A332CB7F959&displaylang=en
You'll find the Cassini version and its related source code at: http://asp.net/Projects/Cassini/Download/Default.aspx?tabindex=0&tabid=1
While developers will want to look at the Cassini version, most people will download the IIS version. In fact this is one of the most popular SQL Server downloads on the Microsoft Web site. In either instance you will also need to have installed the following services in order for the Web Data Administrator to function correctly, including: Microsoft.NET SDK or Visual Studio.NET, Internet Explorer 5.5 or later, and a Web server. The utility comes with a portable Web server, or you can use IIS.
Once you have the SQL Server Web Data Administrator installed you can perform the following action in your browser:
- Create databases using SQL Server 2000 or the MSDE 2000 (Desktop Engine).
- Change data structures (columns) and edit data.
- Modify security settings.
- Create and save queries against your data.
- Modify database automation by working with your stored procedures.
For most people, these operations represent perhaps 90% of the common operations that they do on a daily basis making the Web Data Administrator tool a most useful addition to your arsenal. You'll find that the Web Data Administrator is a rather simple interface that will be easy for you to learn and use with facility.
Barrie Sosinsky is president of consulting company Sosinsky and Associates (Medfield MA). He has written extensively on a variety of computer topics. His company specializes in custom software (database and Web related), training and technical documentation.