How to: Add Columns to Queries

To use a column in a query, you must add it to the query. You might add a column to display it in query output, to use it for sorting, to search the contents of the column, or to summarize its contents. You can decide which of the columns you use in the query are included in the results pane when the query is run. For more information see How to: Remove Columns from Query Results.

Note Note

For Microsoft SQL Server databases, you can see the data type of a column in Query and View Designer; select the table or table-valued object in the Diagram Pane and in the properties window click Column List. Then click the ellipses (…) to open the Column List dialog box.

Wherever you use a column in a query, you can also use an expression that can consist of any combination of columns, literals, operators, and functions. For more information, see Expressions in Queries.


Your computer might show different names or locations for some of the Visual Studio user interface elements in the following instructions. The Visual Studio edition that you have and the settings that you use determine these elements. For more information, see Customizing Development Settings in Visual Studio.

To add an individual column

  • In the Diagram Pane, select the check box next to the column that you want to include.


  • In the Criteria Pane, move to the first blank grid row, click the field in the Column column, and select a column name from the drop-down list.

To add all columns for one table or table-valued object

  • In the Diagram Pane, select the check box next to *(All Columns).

To add all columns for all tables and table-structured objects

  1. Make sure no join lines in the Table Operations Pane are selected.

  2. Right-click in the empty space of the Design window and choose Properties from the shortcut menu.

  3. In the Properties window click Output all columns and choose Yes or No from the dropdown list.

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