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SQL Server Data Tools for SQL Server 2014

Q: I just installed SQL Server 2014 and I don’t see SQL Server Data Tools (SSDT) or Business Intelligence Development Studio (BIDS). Where do I find the new SQL Server Data Tools for SQL Server 2014?

A: For some inexplicable reason, Microsoft stopped shipping SSDT with the SQL Server 2014 installation media—even though the tools that are part of SSDT are required for creating business intelligence (BI) projects. To makes things even more confusing, Microsoft split the older SSDT toolset into two new versions of SSDT.

There is one version named just SQL Server Data Tools (SSDT), which is an add-on to Visual Studio. This version adds the toolset that was formerly known as Data Dude to Visual Studio. These SSDT tools include data and schema comparison, as well as support for refactoring databases, creating views, stored procedures, functions, and triggers. This version of SSDT provides both a live development mode and an offline project mode that helps provide source control for your databases by integrating with Visual Studio for team development, source control, and change tracking.

There are different versions of these SSDT tools depending on the version of Visual Studio that you are using.

  • SQL Server tooling in Visual Studio 2013—Visual Studio 2013 Express for Web, Express for Windows Desktop, Professional, Premium, and Ultimate include the SSDT tools. You don’t need a separate download. To check for the latest version of SSDT, open Visual Studio 2013 and choose the Tools, Extensions, and Updates menu. Then check the Updates section for Microsoft SQL Server Update for database tooling.
  • SSDT Visual Studio 2012—There is a standalone install experience as well as an integrated install for the Visual Studio Professional, Premium, and Ultimate SKUs.
  • SSDT Visual Studio 2010—This version of SSDT is no longer being updated.

The other version of SSDT is confusingly called SQL Server Data Tools – Business Intelligence (SSDT-BI). Although their names are almost identical, SSDT-BI is a distinctly different toolset than SSDT. SSDT-BI is the replacement for BIDS and it enables the development of Integration Services packages, Analysis Services cubes, and Reporting Services reports.

Both versions of SSDT are no cost downloads for SQL Server users. You can find both SSDT and SSDT-BI at Microsoft SQL Server Data Tools.

Related: Important New Features in SQL Server 2014

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