3 Different Ways to display VIEW definition using SQL Server 2008 Management Studio

Here are 3 different ways to display VIEW definitions:

Method 1: Use sp_helptext

USE Northwind
sp_helptext Invoices

Method 2: Use SQL Server 2008 Management Studio

Open SSMS 2008. Choose the database and expand the ‘Views’ node. Right click on it > Script View as > CREATE To > Choose different options as shown below:

View Definition SSMS 2008

Method 3: If you want to display the name and definitions of all view in a database, use this query:

VIEW_DEFINITION as ViewDefinition


View Definition

Alternatively, you can also do a join between sys.views and sys.sql_modules to obtain the same result

About The Author

Suprotim Agarwal, MCSD, MCAD, MCDBA, MCSE, is the founder of DotNetCurry, DNC Magazine for Developers, SQLServerCurry and DevCurry. He has also authored a couple of books 51 Recipes using jQuery with ASP.NET Controls and a new one recently at The Absolutely Awesome jQuery CookBook.

Suprotim has received the prestigous Microsoft MVP award for nine times in a row now. In a professional capacity, he is the CEO of A2Z Knowledge Visuals Pvt Ltd, a digital group that represents premium web sites and digital publications comprising of Professional web, windows, mobile and cloud developers, technical managers, and architects.

Get in touch with him on Twitter @suprotimagarwal, LinkedIn or befriend him on Facebook


Madhivanan said...

Note that information_schema.views will show you only 4000 characters

Other reliable methods are


select object_definition(object_id) from sys.objects
where type='v'


select * from sys.[sql_modules]
where definition like 'CREATE VIEW%'


Suprotim Agarwal said...

Thanks Madhivannan. As mentioned in my post, making a JOIN (using objectid) between sys.views and sys.sql_modules will get the View Name and View Definition

Jeffrey Wank said...

Thank you Madhivaan and Suprotim for sharing your solutions. This is very useful as I used to manually check views from management studio. Knowledge does wonders!

Anonymous said...

Thanks guys, very useful posts!!

Anonymous said...

Very useful post. Keep up the good work guys... :)

Santanu....... said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Santanu....... said...

A very handy post....!!

Anonymous said...

Thank you, this helped a lot!

mike said...

Here is how i do it: