Internet, Networking, & Security Web Development Creating a SQL Server Database Maintenance Plan By Mike Chapple Writer Former Lifewire writer Mike Chapple is an IT professional with more than 10 years' experience cybersecurity and extensive knowledge of SQL and database management. our editorial process Twitter Mike Chapple Updated December 11, 2018 David Crespo / Getty Images Web Development SQL CSS & HTML Web Design Tweet Share Email Database Maintenance Plans allow you to automate many database administration tasks in Microsoft SQL Server. You can create maintenance plans using an easy wizard-based process without any knowledge of Transact-SQL. You may perform the following tasks within a database maintenance plan: Shrinking a databaseBacking up a databasePerforming an operator notificationUpdating database statisticsVerifying the integrity of a databaseCleaning up leftover maintenance filesExecuting a SQL Server Agent jobExecuting a Transact-SQL statementRebuilding an indexReorganizing an indexCleaning up database histories 01 of 07 Starting the Database Maintenance Plan Wizard Open Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) and expand the Management folder. Right-click on the Maintenance Plans folder and select Maintenance Plan Wizard from the pop-up menu. You will see the wizard's opening screen, as shown above. Click Next to continue. 02 of 07 Name the Database Maintenance Plan In the next screen that appears, provide a name and description for your database maintenance plan. You should provide information here that will be helpful to another administrator (or yourself!) who is trying to figure out the purpose of the plan months or years from now. 03 of 07 Schedule Your Database Maintenance Plan You'll probably want to use the default option here Single schedule for the entire plan or no schedule. You do have the option of creating different schedules for different tasks, but we recommend creating different plans for different schedules to help keep things straight. Click the Change button to alter the default schedule and choose the date and time the plan will execute. Click the Next button when you are finished. 04 of 07 Select the Tasks for Your Maintenance Plan You'll see the window shown above. Select the task(s) that you wish to include in your database maintenance plan. When you're finished, click the Next button to continue. 05 of 07 Ordering the Tasks in the Database Maintenance Plan The next window, shown above, allows you to change the order of tasks in your maintenance plan by using the Move Up and Move Down buttons. 06 of 07 Configure the Plan's Task Details Next, you'll have the opportunity to configure the details of each task. The options presented to you will vary based upon the tasks you have chosen. The image above shows an example of the screen used to configure a backup task. When you're finished, click the Next button to continue. 07 of 07 Choose Maintenance Plan Reporting Options Finally, you have the ability to have SQL Server create a report each time the plan executes containing detailed results. You may choose to have this report sent to a user via e-mail or saved to a text file on the server.