Built into 2008 is a nice little tool called Activity Monitor.
If you have SSMS 2008 simply open it, right-click on the top level server name and select “Activity Monitor”.
With Activity Monitor you can get real-time data on Processes, Wait Tasks, and I/O. A very handy and quick view of your SQL Server(s).
Also, the nice part about this is you don’t have to be running SQL 2008, it will work for SQL 2005 as well.
So, if you have a mix of 2005 and 2008 databases you don’t need to install SSMS for each version, just use the 2008 SSMS and you’ll get instant access to the Activity Monitor for both versions.
On additional note: You can use SSMS 2008 with SQL 2000. However, the Activity Monitor will not work with anything below 2005.