When you install SQL Server several databases are created
automatically. Two of the databases (Northwind and pubs) are
sample user databases and can be used as examples, or you can
safely delete them (but they don't take up a lot of hard
disk space). The other four special system databases
(master, model, msdb, and tempdb) are used by the system and
should not be removed. To view the databases that are on your
SQL Server, in Enterprise Manager expand the group your
server is located in, then expand the server, and last
expand the Databases folder. Remember, if you have the "Show
system databases and system objects" checkbox unchecked in
the SQL Server's registration properties, you will be unable
to see the system databases in Enterprise Manager.
Click to Enlarge
-- Contains information about the
server overall and all databases created. The information in
this database includes: file allocations, disk space usage,
system-wide settings, user accounts, and the existence of
other databases and other SQL Servers.
-- This database provides a template
for all newly created databases. If you ever need to add a
table or stored procedures to all the new
databases you create, simply modify the
-- Used by the SQL Server Agent service.
-- Is a workspace used for holding
The last topic I want to cover in this article is the SQL Server Books
Online (sometimes called BOL) resource. Books Online, located on
the start menu under "Programs" > "Microsoft SQL Server",
are an invaluable resource. If you ever have a question the
first place I would go are the Books Online -- they provide
information on just about every topic dealing with SQL Server.
One thing you may notice is that the Books Online are also
used as the online "help" inside Enterprise Manager.
That finishes it up for this week's (fairly simple)
article. Next week we will take a look at database files and
we will also create our first database.
As always, if you have any technical questions please post them on the SQL message board.Please send any non-technical questions, comments, and feedback to my email. I hope you are finding this
series to be a useful one, and I'm looking forward to your feedback.
See All Articles by Columnist Michael Aubert