22.1. Database Windows in Visual Studio 2008

A number of windows specifically deal with databases and their components. From the Data Sources window that shows project-related data files and the Data Connections node in the Server Explorer, to the Database Diagram Editor and the visual designer for database schemas, you'll find most of what you need directly within the IDE. In fact, it's unlikely that you'll need to venture outside of Visual Studio for most application solutions to editing database settings.

Figure 22-1 shows the Visual Studio 2008 IDE with a current database editing session. Notice how the windows, toolbars, and menus all update to match the particular context of editing a database table. In Figure 22-1, you can see the Table Designer menu, along with the Column Properties editing region below the list of columns. The normal Properties tool window contains the properties for the current table. The next few pages take a look at each of these windows and describe their purposes so you can use them effectively.

Figure 22.1. Figure 22-1

22.1.1. Server Explorer

In Chapter 19, you saw how the Server Explorer can be used to navigate the components that make up your system (or indeed the components of any server to which you can connect). One component of this tool window that was omitted from that discussion is the Data Connections node. Through this node Visual Studio ...

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