Database design tools

List of tools that allow for the design of a database.

Database design is a set of activities aimed at improving the development, implementation, and maintenance of an enterprise data management system. Its main goal is to reflect the outline of the database system into real models: physical and logical. Database designers determine what data is to be stored inside the database, and how objects are to be related to each other.

DeZign for Databases

DeZign for Databases uses ERD and data models to graphically design databases and automatically generates the most popular databases.

Desktop/Cloud: Desktop
Generate DDL scripts: Yes
Free edition: No
ER Diagram: Yes

DbSchema

DbSchema is a intuitive designer for complex databases, visual interaction and documentation.

Desktop/Cloud: Desktop
Generate DDL scripts: Yes
Free edition: No
ER Diagram: Yes

Model Xtractor

Model Xtractor is a software utility designed to inspect modeling for traditional or enhanced ER models, with support for most relational database platforms.

Desktop/Cloud: Desktop
Generate DDL scripts: Yes
Free edition: Yes
ER Diagram: Yes

ERBuilder Data Modeler

ERBuilder Data Modeler allows developers to graphically design databases by using entity relationship diagrams, and automatically generates the most popular SQL databases.

Desktop/Cloud: Desktop
Generate DDL scripts: Yes
Free edition: Yes
ER Diagram: Yes

Adminer

Adminer is a tool for managing contents of MySQL databases, formerly known as phpMinAdmin. It is a full-featured database management tool written in PHP.

Desktop/Cloud: Desktop
Generate DDL scripts: Yes
Free edition: Yes
ER Diagram: Yes

ER/Studio

ER/Studio Data Architect helps to easily reverse- and forward-engineer, compare and merge, and visually document data assets across multiple platforms and data sources. It enables data professionals to better manage data models and metadata in complex and dynamic enterprise environments.

Desktop/Cloud: Desktop
Generate DDL scripts: Yes
Free edition: No
ER Diagram: Yes

RazorSQL

RazorSQL is an SQL query tool, database browser, SQL editor, and database administration tool. It provides visual tools to create, alter, describe, execute, and drop database objects such as tables, views, indexes, stored procedures, functions, triggers, and more.

Desktop/Cloud: Desktop
Generate DDL scripts: Yes
Free edition: No
ER Diagram: No

DTM Data Modeler

DTM Data Modeler is an easy-to-use tool allowing you to work both with logical and physical data models in the form of an entity-relationship diagram. The program can create database schema objects directly in the database and can create SQL scripts corresponding to the model taking into account the specified settings.

Desktop/Cloud: Desktop
Generate DDL scripts: Yes
Free edition: Yes
ER Diagram: Yes

DB Designer Fork

DB Designer Fork is a fork of the fabFORCE DBDesigner 4 and a premium database design tool. It integrates entity relationship design, front-end, and SQL exporting.

Desktop/Cloud: Desktop
Generate DDL scripts: Yes
Free edition: Yes
ER Diagram: Yes

DatabaseSpy

Altova DatabaseSpy is the unique multi-database query, design, and database comparison tool that even generates elegant charts directly from query results.

Desktop/Cloud: Desktop
Generate DDL scripts: Yes
Free edition: No
ER Diagram: Yes

Xcase

Xcase is a complete database design tool engineered to help you accomplish all your database-related tasks – from database design to modeling to daily modifications – with greater speed, higher quality, and better adherence to best practices.

Desktop/Cloud: Desktop
Generate DDL scripts: Yes
Free edition: Yes
ER Diagram: Yes

AnySQL Maestro

AnySQL Maestro is the premier multi-purpose admin tool for database management, control and development.

Desktop/Cloud: Desktop
Generate DDL scripts: Yes
Free edition: No
ER Diagram: Yes

Firebird Maestro

Firebird Maestro is the premier Firebird tool for database management, control, and development. It provides a rich set of GUI tools for anyone who uses Firebird. Its key features include support for all Firebird versions up to 4.0, easy database object management, database designer, comfortable access to MySQL security features, data management and data analysis tools, many more.

Desktop/Cloud: Desktop
Generate DDL scripts: Yes
Free edition: No
ER Diagram: Yes

DB-Main

DB-Main is an easy-to-use data modelling and data architecture platform. It is a generic CASE tool dedicated to database applications engineering, and in particular to database design, reverse engineering, re-engineering, integration, maintenance, and evolution.

Desktop/Cloud: Desktop
Generate DDL scripts: Yes
Free edition: No
ER Diagram: Yes

ERD Concepts

ERD Concepts is a database designer and SQL query tool for all major databases. It helps to create a professional and visual attractive Entity Relationship Diagram with domains, tables, foreign keys, views, stored procedures, and more. Your base ERD design is alternatively used to generate DDL scripts to create the actual database.

Desktop/Cloud: Desktop
Generate DDL scripts: Yes
Free edition: Yes
ER Diagram: Yes

The database design process can be very complicated. The more complex the system, the more sophisticated the tool is needed. Their functionality can vary greatly, however, core features include:
• creating and editing database objects,
• database architecture modeling,
• visualization of a database schema,
• tracking relationships between entities,
• grouping logically related objects into clusters,
• diagrams overview.

Database designer tools enable building graphical models and generating DDL scripts on their basis. The script describes data and relations between entities in the designed database. Furthermore, the tools enable reverse engineering (visualization of the model from the SQL script).

Key factors of creating a reliable and well-organized database are:
• a properly designed data structure,
• establishing what data should be stored in particular objects,
• how objects should be related to each other.

All of them can be improved by using the relevant Database design tool. Additionally, some of them allow the visual representation of data using ERD, makes it easier to visualize even more complex schemas.

Without proper software, development is based on raw code. This increases the risk of errors at the initial stage. The tools allow users to edit the visual layout using simple drag-and-drop functions. With a user-friendly interface, browsing the structure is possible even for non-IT people.

We have created a list of tools that support the process of creating database structure and its content. Our list includes free database design tools as well as advanced, more professional data management tools.