Troubleshooting IntelliSense


IntelliSense, integrated into dbForge Studio for SQL Server, is a powerful autocompletion tool for working with the SQL code. It helps to speed up code writing by reducing keystrokes, relieves from necessity to bear in mind a large number of objects' and parameters' names, and prevents typos in clauses and names.

However, there are some cases when IntelliSense doesn't operate properly. This article describes the most common cases when IntelliSense may not be available or simply does not work.

Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio lacks such functionality. Learn more about the advantages of Studio over SSMS.

Possible Reasons and Solutions

IntelliSense is turned off

Ensure that autocompletion is enabled:

  1. On the menu bar, point to Tools, and then select Options. The Options dialog box will appear
  2. Expand the Text Editor options
  3. Ensure that the ?Enable Code Completion? option is selected. Click OK
Enable Code Completion Option

Script is larger than allowed

When working with large scripts, IntelliSense may be unavailable, due to the fact that the script is larger than allowed. To increase the script size value:

  1. On the menu bar, point to Tools, and then select Options. The Options dialog box will appear
  2. Expand the Text Editor options and select Advanced
  3. Select the appropriate value from the drop-down combo box next to the Max script size option

Otherwise, you may divide your script into several parts.

Max sript size

Incorrect cursor location

  • Some elements of T-SQL syntax are not supported by IntelliSense. See the list of supported syntax.
  • IntelliSense is not available within comments and string literals.

Connection is offline

IntelliSense may not work completely, or completion lists may become unavailable due to a connection loss. Make sure the connection is active, or re-establish connection, if it is offline.

Incompatible SQL Server version

SQL Server 2005 and older are not supported. To determine the version of SQL Server, execute the following query:


If the result starts from ?8? or ?9?, it means that your version of SQL Server is not supported by IntelliSense.

Code contains errors

The code may contain errors (e.g. incomplete statement) that disable Itellisense from work. Review the code and correct errors. To simplify the error lookup, refer to the Errors List window, that lists the actual error location within the code.

Errors List Window

Suggestions cache is out of date

Database objects may be missing or be irrelevant due to the fact, that they belong to the connection, used previously. It may happen, if you have to switch connections frequently. To refresh suggestions cache:

  1. On the menu bar click Edit
  2. Point out Code Completion
  3. Select Refresh Suggestions
Refresh Suggestion Option

You do not have permissions to manipulate a certain database element

IntelliSense is not available, if you are trying to work with the database elements, which you do not have permissions.


In this article we reviewed only the most frequent cases causing IntelliSense completely or partially unavailable. If none of the suggestions helped to solve the issue, please visit dbForge Studio for SQL Server Support Area.