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Microsoft announced the March release of Azure Data Studio, yesterday. This latest Azure Data Studio release explores features such as preview support for PostgreSQL in Azure Data Studio,  corresponding preview PostgreSQL extension in Visual Studio Code (VS Code), and SQL Notebooks, among others.

What’s new in Azure Data Studio?

PostgreSQL extension for Azure Data Studio

There’s new preview support for PostgreSQL in Azure Data Studio. The preview support adds on-premises and Azure Database for PostgreSQL to its existing support for SQL Server, Azure SQL Database, Azure SQL Managed Instance, Azure SQL Data Warehouse, and SQL Server 2019 big data clusters.

The Azure Data Studio extension for PostgreSQL comprises a Tools API service that offers data management and high performant query execution capabilities. Azure Data Studio also provides a modern, keyboard-focused PostgreSQL coding experience, that simplifies your everyday tasks. Users can also run on-demand SQL queries now such as the view and save results as text, JSON, or Excel. There’s also an extension marketplace for Azure Data Studio for developers that help them build and contribute back into the open source ecosystem.

Microsoft team states that it is making the new PostgreSQL extension experience open source under the MIT license. This will allow the users to connect to all PostgreSQL databases in case they’re running on Azure (Azure Database for PostgreSQL).

SQL Notebooks

Using SQL Notebooks, you can easily interleave the written instructions, analysis, diagrams, and the animated GIFs using markdown. You can then add code cells with the SQL code to be executed.

The SQL Notebook functionality has been built into the base of Azure Data Studio product and requires no additional extensions to connect to servers and execute the SQL result sets. These SQL notebooks can be used like any other regular query editor. You can get started with SQL notebooks just like a regular query editor. In case you’d like to use other languages such as Python, R, or Scala, you’ll be prompted to install other additional dependencies.

PowerShell extension

PowerShell extension from Virtual Studio (VS) Code is now featured in the Azure Data Studio marketplace. The new PowerShell extension aligns with the other automation scenarios used by the database administrators and developers. There’s an integrated terminal in Azure Data Studio that makes it easy for users to integrate PowerShell experiences with data.

SQL Server dacpac extension

Microsoft team mentions that it has been trying to improve the Data-Tier Application Wizard in Azure Data Studio after receiving feedback from the community. Originally shipped with the SQL Server Import extension, this feature will now be shipped as a separate extension. This is because the team plans to bring more features making it easy to use dacpacs and bacpacs in Azure Data Studio. This extension will also be included in the Admin pack for SQL Server, an extension pack that lets you quickly download the popular features from SQL Server Management Studio.

Other Changes

Community extension highlight: Queryplan.show

The Queryplan.show extension adds integration support to visualize query plans using the community extension Queryplan.show.

Visual Studio Code Refresh from 1.26.1 to 1.30.2

There have been a few refresh updates from the July release (1.26.1) to the November release (1.30.2) of VS Code. Highlights are as follows:

  • New Settings editor UI making it easy to modify Azure Data Studio settings.
  • Multiline search improvements.
  • Better macOS support.

SQL Server 2019 Preview extension

The Microsoft team has been moving features from the SQL Server 2019 preview extension into the core Azure Data Studio tool for decades now. Here is a summary of the features moved into the core tool:

  • Jupyter Notebook support has been moved to Azure Data Studio.
  • Bug fixes in the External Data wizards:
    • New schemas typed into the table mapping controls were getting lost. This is fixed now.
    • Oracle type mappings have been updated.

For more information, check out the official March release notes for Azure Data Studio.

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Tech writer at the Packt Hub. Dreamer, book nerd, lover of scented candles, karaoke, and Gilmore Girls.