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Create a Database User

 

Updated: March 14, 2016

Applies To: SQL Server 2016

THIS TOPIC APPLIES TO: yesSQL Server (starting with 2008)yesAzure SQL DatabaseyesAzure SQL Data Warehouse yesParallel Data Warehouse

This topic describes how to create the most common types of database users. There are eleven type of users. The complete list is provided in the topic CREATE USER (Transact-SQL). All varieties of SQL Server support database users, but not necessarily all types of users.

You can create a database user by using SQL Server Management Studio or by using Transact-SQL.

Management Studio presents 6 options when creating a database user. The following graphic shows the 6 options in the green box, and indicates what they represent.

TypesOfUsers

Selecting the Type of User

Login or user that is not mapped to a login

If you are new to SQL Server, it can be difficult to determine what type of user you want to create. First ask yourself, does the person or group that needs to access the database have a login? Logins in the master database are common for the people who manage the SQL Server and for people who need to access many or all of the database on the instance of SQL Server. For this situation, you will create a SQL user with login. The database user is the identity of the login when it is connected to a database. The database user can use the same name as the login, but that is not required. This topic assumes that a login already exists in SQL Server. For information about how to create a login, see Create a Login

If the person or group that needs to access the database does not have a login and if they only need access to one or few databases, create a Windows user or a SQL user with password. Also called a contained database user, it is not associated with a login in the master database. This is an excellent choice when you want to be able to easily move your database between instances of SQL Server. To use this option on SQL Server 2016, an administrator must first enable contained databases for the SQL Server, and the database be enabled for containment. For more information, see Contained Database Users - Making Your Database Portable.

System_CAPS_ICON_important.jpg Important


When connecting as a contained database user you must provide the name of the database as part of the connection string. To specify the database in Management Studio, in the Connect to dialog box, click Options, and then click the Connection Properties tab.

Select SQL user with password or a SQL user with login based on a SQL Server authentication login, when the person connecting cannot authenticate with Windows. This is common when people outside of your organization (for example customers) are connecting to your SQL Server.

System_CAPS_ICON_tip.jpg Tip


For people inside your organization, Windows authentication is a better choice, because they won't have to remember an additional password, and because Windows authentication offers additional security features such as Kerberos.

A user is a database level security principal. Logins must be mapped to a database user to connect to a database. A login can be mapped to different databases as different users but can only be mapped as one user in each database. In a partially contained database, a user can be created that does not have a login. For more information about contained database users, see CREATE USER (Transact-SQL). If the guest user in a database is enabled, a login that is not mapped to a database user can enter the database as the guest user.

System_CAPS_ICON_important.jpg Important


The guest user is ordinarily disabled. Do not enable the guest user unless it is necessary.

As a security principal, permissions can be granted to users. The scope of a user is the database. To connect to a specific database on the instance of SQL Server, a login must be mapped to a database user. Permissions inside the database are granted and denied to the database user, not the login.

Requires ALTER ANY USER permission on the database.

To create a database user
  1. In Object Explorer, expand the Databases folder.

  2. Expand the database in which to create the new database user.

  3. Right-click the Security folder, point to New, and select User….

  4. In the Database User – New dialog box, on the General page, select one of the following user types from the User type list:

    • SQL user with login

    • SQL user with password

    • SQL user without login

    • User mapped to a certificate

    • User mapped to an asymmetric key

    • Windows user

  5. When you select an option, the remaining options in the dialog may change. Some options only apply to specific types of database users. Some options can be left blank and will use a default value.

    User name
    Enter a name for the new user. If you have chosen Windows user from the User type list, you can also click the ellipsis (…) to open the Select User or Group dialog box.

    Login name
    Enter the login for the user. Alternately, click the ellipsis (…) to open the Select Login dialog box. Login name is available if you select either SQL user with login or Windows user from the User type list.

    Password and Confirm password
    Enter a password for users who authenticate at the database.

    Default language
    Enter the default language of the user.

    Default schema
    Enter the schema that will own objects created by this user. Alternately, click the ellipsis (…) to open the Select Schema dialog box. Default schema is available if you select either SQL user with login, SQL user without login, or Windows user from the User type list.

    Certificate name
    Enter the certificate to be used for the database user. Alternately, click the ellipsis (…) to open the Select Certificate dialog box. Certificate name is available if you select User mapped to a certificate from the User type list.

    Asymmetric key name
    Enter the key to be used for the database user. Alternately, click the ellipsis (…) to open the Select Asymmetric Key dialog box. Asymmetric key name is available if you select User mapped to an asymmetric key from the User type list.

  6. Click OK.

Additional Options

The Database User – New dialog box also offers options on four additional pages: Owned Schemas, Membership, Securables, and Extended Properties.

  • The Owned Schemas page lists all possible schemas that can be owned by the new database user. To add schemas to or remove them from a database user, under Schemas owned by this user, select or clear the check boxes next to the schemas.

  • The Membership page lists all possible database membership roles that can be owned by the new database user. To add roles to or remove them from a database user, under Database role membership, select or clear the check boxes next to the roles.

  • The Securables page lists all possible securables and the permissions on those securables that can be granted to the login.

  • The Extended properties page allows you to add custom properties to database users. The following options are available on this page.

    Database
    Displays the name of the selected database. This field is read-only.

    Collation
    Displays the collation used for the selected database. This field is read-only.

    Properties
    View or specify the extended properties for the object. Each extended property consists of a name/value pair of metadata associated with the object.

    Ellipsis (…)
    Click the ellipsis (…) after Value to open the Value for Extended Property dialog box. Type or view the value of the extended property in this larger location. For more information, see Value for Extended Property Dialog Box.

    Delete
    Removes the selected extended property.

To create a database user

  1. In Object Explorer, connect to an instance of Database Engine.

  2. On the Standard bar, click New Query.

  3. Copy and paste the following example into the query window and click Execute.

    -- Creates the login AbolrousHazem with password '340$Uuxwp7Mcxo7Khy'.  
    CREATE LOGIN AbolrousHazem   
        WITH PASSWORD = '340$Uuxwp7Mcxo7Khy';  
    GO  
    
    -- Creates a database user for the login created above.  
    CREATE USER AbolrousHazem FOR LOGIN AbolrousHazem;  
    GO  
    
    

For more information, see CREATE USER (Transact-SQL) which contains many more Transact-SQL examples.

Principals (Database Engine)
Create a Login
CREATE LOGIN (Transact-SQL)

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