SQL Server Configuration Manager Help

Applies to: SQL Server - Windows only

Use SQL Server Configuration Manager to configure SQL Server services and configure network connectivity. To create or manage database objects, configure security, and write Transact-SQL queries, use SQL Server Management Studio. For more information about SQL Server Management Studio, see SQL Server Books Online.


If you need to configure SQL Server on Linux, use the mssql-conf tool. For more information, see Configure SQL Server on Linux with the mssql-conf tool.

This section contains the F1 Help articles for the dialogs in SQL Server Configuration Manager.


SQL Server Configuration Manager cannot configure versions of SQL Server earlier than Microsoft SQL Server 2005 (9.x).


SQL Server Configuration Manager manages services that are related to SQL Server. Although many of these tasks can be accomplished using the Microsoft Windows Services dialog, is important to note that SQL Server Configuration Manager performs additional operations on the services it manages, such as applying the correct permissions when the service account is changed. Using the normal Windows Services dialog to configure any of the SQL Server services might cause the service to malfunction.

Use SQL Server Configuration Manager for the following tasks for services:

  • Start, stop, and pause services

  • Configure services to start automatically or manually, disable the services, or change other service settings

  • Change the passwords for the accounts used by the SQL Server services

  • Start SQL Server using trace flags (command line parameters)

  • View the properties of services

SQL Server Network Configuration

Use SQL Server Configuration Manager for the following tasks related to the SQL Server services on this computer:

  • Enable or disable a SQL Server network protocol

  • Configure a SQL Server network protocol


For a short tutorial about how to configure protocols and connect to the SQL Server Database Engine, see Tutorial: Getting Started with the Database Engine.

SQL Server Native Client Configuration


The SQL Server Native Client (often abbreviated SNAC) has been removed from SQL Server 2022 (16.x) and SQL Server Management Studio 19 (SSMS). The SQL Server Native Client (SQLNCLI or SQLNCLI11) and the legacy Microsoft OLE DB Provider for SQL Server (SQLOLEDB) are not recommended for new application development. Switch to the new Microsoft OLE DB Driver (MSOLEDBSQL) for SQL Server or the latest Microsoft ODBC Driver for SQL Server going forward. For SQLNCLI that ships as a component of SQL Server Database Engine (versions 2012 through 2019), see this Support Lifecycle exception.

SQL Server clients connect to SQL Server by using the SQL Server Native Client network library. Use SQL Server Configuration Manager for the following tasks related to client applications on this computer:

  • For SQL Server client applications on this computer, specify the protocol order, when connecting to instances of SQL Server.

  • Configure client connection protocols.

  • For SQL Server client applications, create aliases for instances of SQL Server, so that clients can connect using a custom connection string.

For more information about each of these tasks, see F1 help for each task.

Open SQL Server Configuration Manager

  • On the Start menu, point to All Programs, point to Microsoft SQL Server (version), point to Configuration Tools, and then select SQL Server Configuration Manager.

To access SQL Server Configuration Manager Using Windows 8

Because SQL Server Configuration Manager is a snap-in for the Microsoft Management Console program and not a stand-alone program, SQL Server Configuration Manager not does not appear as an application when running Windows 8. To open SQL Server Configuration Manager, in the Search charm, under Apps, type SQLServerManager12.msc (for SQL Server 2014 (12.x)) or SQLServerManager11.msc (for SQL Server 2012 (11.x)), and then press Enter.