Connect to Server (Database Engine)

Use this dialog to view or specify options when connecting to Microsoft SQL Server Database Engine. In most cases, you can connect by entering the computer name of the database server in the Server name box and then clicking Connect. If you are connecting to a named instance, use the computer name followed by a backslash, and then the instance name. For example, mycomputer\myinstance. If you are connecting to SQL Server Express, use the computer name followed by \sqlexpress.

Many factors can affect your ability to connect to SQL Server. For help, see the following resources:

Options

Server type
When registering a server from Object Explorer, select the type of server to connect to: Database Engine, Analysis Services, Reporting Services, or Integration Services. The rest of the dialog shows only the options that apply to the selected server type. When registering a server from Registered Servers, the Server type box is read-only, and matches the type of server displayed in the Registered Servers component. To register a different type of server, select Database Engine, Analysis Services, Reporting Services, SQL Server Compact, or Integration Services from the Registered Servers toolbar before starting to register a new server.

Server name
Select the server instance to connect to. The server instance last connected to is displayed by default.

Note

To connect to an active user instance of SQL Server Express connect using named pipes protocol specifying the pipe name, such as np:\\.\pipe\3C3DF6B1-2262-47\tsql\query. For more information, see the SQL Server Express documentation.

Authentication
The current version of SSMS, offers five authentication modes when connecting to an instance of the Database Engine. If your Authentication dialog box does not match the following list, download the most recent version of SSMS, from Download SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS).

Windows Authentication
Microsoft Windows Authentication mode allows a user to connect through a Windows user account.

SQL Server Authentication
When a user connects with a specified login name and password from a non-trusted connection, SQL Server performs the authentication itself by checking to see if a SQL Server login account has been set up and if the specified password matches the one previously recorded. If SQL Server does not have a login account set, authentication fails, and the user receives an error message. When possible, use Windows Authentication or Active Directory - Password authentication.

Active Directory - Universal with MFA support
Active Directory - Universal with MFA is an interactive work flow that supports Azure Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA). Azure MFA helps safeguard access to data and applications while meeting user demand for a simple sign-in process. It delivers strong authentication with a range of easy verification options—phone call, text message, smart cards with pin, or mobile app notification—allowing users to choose the method they prefer. When the user account is configured for MFA the interactive authentication work flow requires additional user interaction through pop-up dialog boxes, smart card use, etc. When the user account is configured for MFA, the user must select Azure Universal Authentication to connect. If the user account does not require MFA, the user can still use the other two Azure Active Directory Authentication options. For more information, see SSMS support for Azure AD MFA with SQL Database and SQL Data Warehouse. If necessary, you can change the domain that authenticates the login, by clicking Options, selecting the Connection Properties tab, and then completing the AD domain name or tenant ID box.

Active Directory - Password
Azure Active Directory Authentication is a mechanism of connecting to MicrosoftAzure SQL Database by using identities in Azure Active Directory (Azure AD). Use this method for connecting to SQL Database if you are logged in to Windows using credentials from a domain that is not federated with Azure, or when using Azure AD authentication using Azure AD based on the initial or the client domain. For more information, see Connecting to SQL Database By Using Azure Active Directory Authentication.

Active Directory - Integrated
Azure Active Directory Authentication is a mechanism of connecting to MicrosoftAzure SQL Database by using identities in Azure Active Directory (Azure AD). Use this method for connecting to SQL Database if you are logged in to Windows using your Azure Active Directory credentials from a federated domain. For more information, see Connecting to SQL Database By Using Azure Active Directory Authentication.

User name
The Windows user name to connect with. This option is only available if you have selected to connect using Active Directory Password Authentication. It is read-only when you select Windows Authentication or Active Directory - Integrated authentication.

Login
Enter the login to connect with. This option is only available if you have selected to connect using SQL Server Authentication or Active Directory Password Authentication.

Password
Enter the password for the login. This option is only editable if you have selected to connect using SQL Server Authentication or Active Directory - Password authentication.

Connect
Click to connect to the server.

Options
Click to display the Connection Properties, and Additional Connection Parameters tabs.