Azure Data Studio – Switching from Management Studio (SSMS) to Azure Data Studio (ADS)

Azure Data Studio (formerly SQL Operations Studio) is a free Cross-Platform DB management tool for for Windows, macOS and Linux. Azure Data Studio (ADS) initial release was only compatible for SQL Server, however recently Microsoft released a PostgreSQL extension for ADS – so now you can also manage your PostgreSQL instance using ADS. For more details on Azure Data Studio PostgreSQL Extension, refer to my earlier posts

Initially, I was apprehensive switching to ADS as I did not want to leave the comfort and ease of SSMS – after all I had been using it for more than a decade. My thoughts changed once I was on it.

Also, do you know ADS is built on Visual Studio code that has multiple options to ‘Customize’?And in this post I’ll take that feature and share how you could ‘Customize’ and ‘Personalize’ Azure Data Studio.

I. Change the Color theme

  1. Open Settings by clicking the gear on the bottom left and click on Settings
  2. Click on Color Theme
  3. Choose from the number of options (Choose between Light, Dark and High Contrast themes)

II. Change Keyboard Shortcuts

  1. Open Settings by clicking the gear on the bottom left and click on Settings
  2. Click on Keyboard Shortcuts

Change Run Query from Default to F5 And/Or Ctrl+E

// Place your key bindings in this file to overwrite the defaults
[
 {
  "key": "ctrl+e",
  "command": "runQueryKeyboardAction"
 },
 {
  "key": "f5",
  "command": "-runQueryKeyboardAction"
 }
]

III. Add Extensions

  1. Click the Extensions icon on the left
  2. Select the Install button on the extension you want from the list
  3. Click the Reload button to activate the installed extension

Refer to my previous post for  detailed step-by-step instructions for installing PostgreSQL extension.

IV. Get ‘Actual’ execution plan

  1. Highlight the query and Press [Ctrl] + [M] Or click Explain

You can modify the keyboard shortcut to your preference in user settings

V. Open an Integrated Terminal

  1. Use the Ctrl+` keyboard shortcut with the back tick character
  2. As a default, Terminal on my Windows 10 use Powershell, while Linux and macOS use $SHELL.
  3. You can customize and change the terminal by specifying the correct path for executable and update the settings. Below is the list of common shell executable and their default locations.
// Command Prompt
"terminal.integrated.shell.windows": "C:\\Windows\\System32\\cmd.exe"
// PowerShell
"terminal.integrated.shell.windows": "C:\\Windows\\System32\\WindowsPowerShell\\v1.0\\powershell.exe"
// Git Bash
"terminal.integrated.shell.windows": "C:\\Program Files\\Git\\bin\\bash.exe"

Isn’t customizing on ADS easy? Let me know what you think.

I’ll share more about Azure Data Studio as I continue the journey – so stay tuned!

Azure Data Studio PostgreSQL Extension – Custom insight dashboard


Azure Data Studio (formerly SQL Operations Studio) is a free Cross-Platform DB management tool for Windows, macOS and Linux.  Staying true to their promise of offering a unified data management experience for developers, Microsoft recently released PostgreSQL Extension for Azure Data Studio

So now developers can use same great GUI features for PostgreSQL database as they were for SQL Server, like IntelliSense, Multiple Query windows and Custom insight dashboard. In this blog post I’ll explain how to create a custom insight and add it to PostgreSQL dashboard as a widget

For this exercise I’ll use a simple query to display ‘active connections’ grouped by connection state

Step 1. Prepare your custom insight

1. Open a new Query Editor (Ctrl+N)

2. Copy / Paste below query

-- ADS custom dashboard - Get Active Vs Inactive connections
SELECT state, count(pid) 
    FROM pg_stat_activity 
     GROUP BY state, datname
     HAVING datname = '<app data>' --replace with your db name
          ORDER BY count(pid) DESC;

3. Save the query as “connection_stats.SQL” file and execute the query (F5)

4. Once you get the result-set, click on View as Chart

5. Customize the chart and click on Create Insight

Step 2. Add the insight to database dashboard

  1. Copy the insight configuration (the JSON data).
  2. Press Ctrl+Comma to open User Settings
  3. Type dashboard in Search Settings
  4. Click Edit for dashboard.database.widgets

  5. Paste the insight configuration JSON into dashboard.database.widgets. A formatted dashboard setting should look something like this
  6. Save the User Settings file
  7. In Server Explorer, right click on your database server name and click Manage
    Similar to above, you can also create more such “insights” to the default server dashboard. I have created one for checking top 5 tables by size (using below query)

    -- Get details of TOP `n` tables in database
    SELECT cl.relname AS objectname 
    ,pg_total_relation_size(cl.oid)/1024/1024/1024 AS size_in_GB
      FROM pg_class cl
         LEFT JOIN pg_namespace n ON (n.oid = cl.relnamespace)
         LEFT JOIN pg_stat_user_tables s ON (s.relid =cl.oid)
         WHERE nspname NOT IN ('pg_catalog', 'information_schema')
                 AND cl.relkind <> 'i' 
                 AND nspname !~ '^pg_toast' 
                   ORDER BY pg_total_relation_size(cl.oid) DESC 
                      LIMIT 5;