It has been quite a long time since I stopped posting about various SQL downloads available on the interest. The reason was that many users were not interested in learning about it. However the latest release of SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS), requires a mention about it. The latest version contains Performance Dashboard by default.
Before I start I would like to share the link to download SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS).
Please note that downloading SSMS is FREE and it works with all the version of SQL Server 2008, R2, SQL Server 2012, SQL Server 2014, SQL Server 2016 and SQL Server 2017.
You can also install SSMS 17.x along with earlier version of SSMS as well. I generally install both the versions of SSMS and use them side by side.
Well, now let us discuss the primary reason, why I recommend to use the latest version of SSMS.
The latest version of SSMS (17.2 and onwards) includes Performance Dashboard in it. This is just wonderful as now I can query any version of SQL Server instance (2008 onwards) with just SSMS 17.2. When I do SQL Server Performance Tuning Performance Health Check, I use my own scripts for this task. However, if you are a novice user of SQL Server, you would find a performance dashboard quite helpful you to identify CPU bottlenecks, I/O bottlenecks, blocking as well as index recommendations.
Well, before you start using this for solving all of your performance problems, here is a word of caution:
Do not follow all the recommendations of the performance dashboard. They are a great starting point and you must test each of them out first before you deploy them on your production system. You could probably harm of your system if you do not understand how to interpret the outcome of the performance dashboard.
You can access performance dashboards by right clicking your server instance and then selecting the first option in standard reports.
Once you select the first option of Performance Dashboard you will see the following screen where you can further navigate to different sections.
Reference: Pinal Dave (https://blog.sqlauthority.com)