If “shrink that database” makes you cringe, that’s a good sign. Nevertheless, sometimes it has to happen. On that rare occasion in which it needs to happen, Andy Mallon gives you a how-to guide:
Perhaps you just implemented data compression, and have 60% free space in your database.
Perhaps you just deleted a bunch of old data, and have significant free space in your database.
There are a handful of scenarios where you have free space in the database, you’ll never use it, and you need to shrink. Just don’t make a habit of it.
Shrink should not be part of your normal routine, but it does come in handy sometimes. Auto-shrink, though? Burn that to the ground.