Friday, August 27, 2010

Windows 7 DSN Creation Guide

Lately I've been getting a lot of requests for step-by-step documentation for non-technical end-users. Well actually not just lately. I always have. But lately I've been getting tired of writing the same document over and over so I've begun to create a little library of step-by-step guides as well as templates for standard database related documentation.

My latest request was for creating a SQL Server DSN on Windows 7. Attached are the steps for creating one. You can find these same instructions in an MS Word document that contains screen-shots for the entire process here.

Follow the steps below to create a DSN on a Windows 7 machine. These steps are also very similar for prior Windows versions.

Click Start->Run. Type ODBCAD32.exe and hit enter.

Another option would be to open the Windows Control Panel and then open Administrative Tools. You should see Data Sources (ODBC). Double click this icon.

Click on the System DSN tab.

Click Add.

Select the appropriate driver.

Click Finish.

The steps below are specific to setting up a SQL Server Native 10.0 DSN.

Enter the Name you wish to use for the DSN. This is usually the name of the database you’re connecting to or if you intend to use it for multiple databases you can use the server name.

Enter the name of the Server your database(s) reside on.

*If your database(s) reside on a local non-named instance of SQL Server your Server name should be localhost or the name of your machine. If you are running a named instance of SQL Server (which is the case for the default installation of SQL Server Express Edition) your Server name should be something like localhost\SQLExpress.

Click Next.

Choose your authentication type. If your Windows Active Directory account has the necessary privileges use Integrated Windows authentication. Otherwise use SQL Server authentication with a SQL Server user name and password that has the necessary level of permissions for the database you are connecting to.

Click Next.

Click the Change the default database to checkbox and select the database you want to connect to. This will be the default database when using the DSN. If you intend to connect to multiple databases you can leave this box unchecked.

Click Next.

Click Finish.

Click the Test Data Source . . . button to ensure that the DSN has been configured correctly.

Click Ok.

Click Ok.

Click Ok.

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