Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Database modeling support in SQL Developer

There is an updated statement of direction for Oracle SQL Developer availble at OTN.

Finally there will be support for data modeling using graphical tools:
  • Design of logical Entity Relationship Diagrams
  • Design of physical schemas
  • Reverse engineering of existing schemas
  • Import of existing models from Designer and CA Erwin
  • Support for objectrelational types and new 11g features
It took Oracle really a long time to decide on a replacement for Oracle Designer (with regards to data modeling, design capture and change propagation).

Finally it is here. Really looking forward to it. It will be available as an optional plugin for SQL Developer.



Darek said...

Wow! Great news.

Anonymous said...

If you don't want to wait for SQL Developer to have data modeling you can use JDeveloper now.

Anonymous said...

Do you know if this optional package will cost anything? I mean the Oracle Designer wasn't for free.

Unknown said...

Hi anonymous,

sure, I have used JDeveloper a few times to model and capture an existing data model.

But the support is quite limited.

There are many features missing:
- Entity relationship modeling
- No physical modeling (physical table parameters, which tablespace)
- limited support for Oracle features (doesn't even know about Index organized tables)

Thus you cannot really use it in that many real world projects where you have a need to model the physical model as well and capture the changes to the data model to propagate the changes.

It does help you with some simple modeling tasks, but there are many things missing.

Hopefully they find their way (again) into SQL Developer.


Unknown said...

Hi tarn,

it is possible, but I (personally) don't think it is likely. I assume it will be available for free.

And btw, Oracle Designer was a lot more than "just a database modeling tool". It was a complete CASE tool, modeling functional requirements, database entities, application modules (reports, forms). Having specified the function requirement and database entities you could move on the generation part. It would generate the data model as well as the whole application in different executable environments like Oracle Forms/Reports, mod_plsql web applications and visual basic (I believe, haven't used it in years).

Thus, the modeling part is just a small part of the whole Oracle Designer functionality.


Anonymous said...

Hi Dietmar,

I had fears that they would start charging for SQL Developer too.

You mentioned that designer quote "It would generate the data model as well as the whole application...."

Do you think they will take the same direction with SQL developer to APEX?

Michael H.

Unknown said...

Hi Michael,

I don't think they will charge for SQL Developer from what I have heard so far. I have asked the product management about that, too. It is very unlikely that Oracle will charge for SQL Developer, especially in the midterm.

They don't have a record of giving out products for free and starting to charge for them later. Usually it is the other way around. Look at Oracle XE and JDeveloper, for example.

As far as generation of APEX applications with SQL Developer goes:
I could envision this, but I don't have any specifics on that. But I would guess they will not take it as far as a CASE tool, perhaps having wizards to create a simple CRUD application based on a set of tables, just like the integrated wizard in APEX for creating new applications.

You might get better answers from the SQL Developer and APEX forums on OTN directly, the guys from product management and development are actively participating there.