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Add or Remove Product Documentation for SQL Server

This topic describes how to add, remove, or update product documentation for SQL Server 2012.

SQL Server product documentation is available online or as three separate downloads: Books Online, Developer Reference, and Installation. Some content in Developer Reference links to product documentation for the .NET Framework. If you are viewing SQL Server product documentation offline, you may also want to download the .NET Framework documentation.

Downloading SQL Server Product Documentation for Local Viewing

Using Help Library Manager, you can download new content from MSDN’s content publication endpoint for use on a local client computer. The MSDN endpoint contains a subset of content found on MSDN online. Using Help Library Manager requires an Internet connection to access the download package on MSDN. The time required to download and install documentation depends on a variety of factors, including your Internet connection speed and other activities occurring on the local computer.

Use the following steps to download product documentation for offline use with a local computer:

Internet-connected computers:

  1. Launch the Help Library Manager by clicking Manage Help Settings. In Windows 7, select Start, All Programs, SQL Server 2012, Help & Community and then clicking Manage Help Settings, or by launching SQL Server Management Studio, clicking the Help menu, and then selecting Manage Help Settings.

  2. In Help Library Manager click Install content from online.

  3. Scroll down to SQL Server 2012 in the list of content available to download.

  4. Click Add next to the content you want to download.

  5. Click the Update button when you have selected everything you want. This will initiate the download operation and install the content.

  6. Once Help Library Manager has completed the download and installation process, click Finish and then click Exit to close Help Library Manager.

  7. To view the downloaded content, close the documentation viewer and then restart production documentation for SQL Server using one of the following methods:

    • Run SQL Server Documentation. From the Windows 7 Start menu, point to All Programs, point to Microsoft SQL Server 2012, point to Documentation & Community, and then click SQL Server Documentation.

    • From SQL Server Management Studio: On the Help menu, click View Help.

    • From SQL Server SQL Server Data Tools (SSDT): On the Help menu, click View Help.

    • From F1 or Help buttons in the user interface: For context-sensitive information, press F1 on your keyboard, or click Help in the user interface dialog box.

Computers without an Internet connection:

Customers working on computers that have no access to the Internet still must go to a computer that has an Internet connection to download the self-extracting EXE posted to the Microsoft Download center page - Product Documentation for Microsoft SQL Server 2012 for firewall and proxy restricted environments - and follow the instructions below that are also published on the download center page:

  1. Click the Download button on the download center page to start the download operation.

  2. Click Save to save the download to a USB drive or other portable medium that can be carried into the firewalled environment or to the desired computer.

  3. Double-click the self-extracting EXE to unpack its contents.

  4. Specify the location of your choice to extract the contents to. For example, a network share that is accessible to your destination computer or server.

  5. Launch the Help Library Manager by clicking Manage Help Settings. In Windows 7, select Start, All Programs, SQL Server 2012, Help & Community and then clicking Manage Help Settings, or by launching SQL Server Management Studio, clicking the Help menu, and then selecting Manage Help Settings.

  6. In Help Library Manager, click Choose online or local help.

  7. Select I want to use local help and then click OK.

  8. Click Install content from disk and browse to the directory where you unpacked the downloaded EXE.

  9. Select the HelpContentSetup.msha file and then click Open.

  10. Click Next.

  11. Click Add next to the documentation you want to install.

  12. Click Update.

  13. Once Help Library Manager has completed the installation process, click Finish and then click Exit to close Help Library Manager.

Adding Documentation to SQL Server Data Tools:

SQL Server product documentation is not automatically available to SQL Server Data Tools. Use the following steps to link documentation sets from SQL Server and SQL Server Data Tools:

  1. Go to the SQL Server Data Tools Help menu and select the Manage Help Settings item. This will launch Help Library Manager within the context of the Visual Studio Help catalog.

  2. Scroll down to the SQL Server section and click Add. Since the SQL Server content already exists on your computer, it will not be downloaded a second time. Instead, Help Library Manager will update the Visual Studio Help catalog index to include the product documentation for SQL Server.

  3. Close Help Library Manager. SQL Server documentation will be available for use from SQL Server Data Tools.

Installing the .NET Framework Documentation:

The Windows SDK for Windows Server and .NET Framework is available as a free download from this SDK download Web site. The Windows SDK includes the tools, code samples, and documentation that a developer needs to develop applications and business solutions that use the common language runtime (CLR). For SQL Server users and application developers, CLR integration means that you can now write stored procedures, triggers, user-defined types, user-defined functions - both scalar and table-valued functions - and user-defined aggregate functions by using any .NET Frameworks language, including Visual Basic and Visual C#.

Integrating .NET Framework Documentation with SQL Server Books Online:

The Windows SDK for Windows Server and .NET Framework documentation is also available for download through Help Library Manager. Using Help Library manager to install SDK and .NET Framework documentation enables direct links from SQL Server Books Online to those documentation sets, and adds them to local search results.

To check for updated product documentation:

  1. Launch the Help Library Manager by clicking Manage Help Settings. In Windows 7, select Start, All Programs, SQL Server 2012, Help & Community and then clicking Manage Help Settings, or by launching SQL Server Management Studio, clicking the Help menu, and then selecting Manage Help Settings.

  2. Click Check for updates online.

  3. Help Library Manager will list all content installed on the computer and mark it either Up to date or Update available.

  4. Click the Update button to update all content where updates are available.

To update product documentation in secured environments, check the Microsoft Download center page for periodic updates: Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Product Documentation for firewall and proxy restricted environments. When updated content is available, remove existing product documentation and then complete the steps above to download and install the updates. Use the following steps to remove documentation prior to installing updates.

Note that there are three components to SQL Server documentation:

  • SQL Server content.

  • Documentation components for viewing SQL Server content.

  • Microsoft Help Viewer 1.1.

To remove content:

  1. Launch the Help Library Manager by clicking Manage Help Settings. In Windows 7, select Start, All Programs, SQL Server 2012, Help & Community and then clicking Manage Help Settings, or by launching SQL Server Management Studio, clicking the Help menu, and then selecting Manage Help Settings.

  2. Click Remove content.

  3. Click Remove next to the content you no longer want.

  4. Click Remove at the bottom of the Help Library Manager window.

  5. Click Finish when Help Library Manager has completed removing the selected content.

  6. Click Exit to close Help Library Manager

To completely uninstall the documentation components for SQL Server:

  1. Open Programs and Features control panel.

  2. Select SQL Server 2012.

  3. Click Uninstall/Change.

  4. Click Remove in the SQL Server 2012 window that opens.

  5. In the SQL Server 2012 Setup Wizard, click OK in the Setup Support Rules window.

  6. In the Select Features window, select Documentation Components and then click Next.

  7. In the Removal Rules window, click Next.

  8. In the Ready to Remove window, click Remove.

  9. After the selected features have been removed, click Close.

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