SQL SERVER – Manage Help Settings – CTRL + ALT + F1

It is a miracle that curiosity survives formal education. ~ Albert Einstein

I have 3 years old daughter and she never misses any chance to play with the system. I have multiple computers and I always make sure that if I am working with production server, I never leave it open but when I am doing some experiment I often leave my computer open. My daughter loves the part when I have left the computer open and I am not observing her. Recently I had the same scenario, I got urgent call and I moved away from my computer and when I returned she was playing with SSMS left open my computer. Here is the screen which was visible on the screen.

For a moment, I could not figure out what was this screen and what was about to get updated. I tried to ask her what keys she pressed the reaction was “I wanted – eya eya o”. Well, what more I expect from 3 years old. She is no computer genius – she just learned to use notepad and paint on my machine.

Finally, when I saw the above screen in detail, I realize that this screen was from the help screen and something got updated. I have been using SQL Server for a long time but I never updated help on the screen. When I need to search something if I remember that I have written it earlier I will go to http://search.sqlauthority.com and will search there or will search on Google.

As this computer was already updated I fired up Virtual Machine and tried to look recreate how my daughter was reached to above screen. Here are the steps which I have to do to reach to above screen.

Go to SSMS >> Toolbar >> Help >> Manage Help Settings (or type CTRL+ALT+F1) and click it.

Above click brought up following screen.

I clicked on Check for update online brought following screen up.

When I clicked on Update it brought me back to original screen which my daughter was able to bring up earlier.

I found it so interesting that what took me 2-3 minutes to figure out and the screen which I have never come across in my career I learned from my curiosity like my daughter.

Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.sqlauthority.com)

8 thoughts on “SQL SERVER – Manage Help Settings – CTRL + ALT + F1

  1. At what point will SQL Server 2012 start using Help 2.0 instead of Help 1.0? Currently, I have to maintain two different sets of local help, Visual Studio 2012, which uses Help 2.0 and SQL Server 2012 (SSMS), which uses Help 1.0. The two products went RTM in fairly close proximity to each other, so there is no excuse for them to be using two completely different Help engines.


  2. Could not load file or assembly ‘Microsoft.SqlServer.Management.Sdk.Sfc, Version=, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=89845dcd8080cc91′ or one of its dependencies. The system cannot find the file specified.


  3. Pingback: SQL SERVER – Auto Recovery File Settings in SSMS – SQL in Sixty Seconds #034 – Video « SQL Server Journey with SQL Authority

  4. Pingback: SQL SERVER – Wrap SQL Code in SSMS – SQL in Sixty Seconds #038 – Video « SQL Server Journey with SQL Authority

  5. I personally had to show this unique posting, “SQL SERVER – Manage Help Settings – CTRL + ALT + F1 SQL Server Journey with SQL Authority” along with my close friends
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