Set up your workspace to use Databricks SQL

This getting started tutorial provides guidance for workspace admins who want to set up Databricks SQL for their workspace users. Databricks SQL lets you run all your SQL and BI applications at scale with better price and performance. It includes a unified governance model, open formats and APIs, and tools of your choice.


To complete these tasks, you must be a workspace admin and your Databricks workspace must be on the Premium plan or above.

Step 1: Enable data access and configure parameters


If your workspace is enabled for Unity Catalog, you don’t need to enable data access. Unity Catalog supports SQL Warehouses by default.

If your workspace is not enabled for Unity Catalog, you will need to either select or create an instance profile that the SQL warehouses uses to access storage. For instructions, see Enable data access configuration.

You can set workspace-level configuration parameters to apply to all SQL warehouses in your workspace. These parameters affect the behavior of Databricks SQL outside of the specified SQL syntax. These parameters control things like ANSI SQL enforcement, Photon usage, and SQL statement timeouts. See SQL configuration parameters.

Step 2: Grant access to Databricks SQL

If a user doesn’t have access to Databricks SQL, a workspace admin must grant them the entitlement. By default, all new users have access to Databricks SQL.

Grant user access to Databricks SQL

To grant Databricks SQL access to a user:

  1. As a workspace admin, go to Admin Settings.

  2. Click to the Users tab.

  3. In the user row, click Databricks SQL access.

Grant group access to Databricks SQL

To grant access to a group:

  1. In the admin settings page, click the Groups tab.

  2. Click the group name.

  3. Click the Entitlements tab.

  4. Click Databricks SQL access.

Step 3: Create a SQL warehouse

A SQL warehouse is a simplified compute resource that lets you run SQL commands on data objects within Databricks SQL.

Databricks recommends creating a serverless SQL warehouse. Serverless SQL warehouses are fully managed by Databricks and give users instant access to elastic compute resources. See Serverless compute.

To create a SQL warehouse:

  1. Click SQL Warehouses in the sidebar then Create SQL Warehouse.

  2. Enter a Name for the warehouse.

  3. Accept the default warehouse settings or edit them.

  4. Click Create.

  5. The permissions modal appears, where you can give users or groups access to the warehouse.

To learn more about creating and managing SQL warehouses, see Create a SQL warehouse.

Next steps

Your workspace is now set up to use Databricks SQL. The following resources can help you learn more about using Databricks SQL: