31 July 2009

Data Modeler connects to the Database...(another online demonstration)

The last few demos I have done have been about creating models without the need for a database connection. In this next one you do need a connection to the database, as the demo is about connecting to and importing the detail from the data dictionary.

The demo talks about the diagram and the subviews created. It shows the logical model and details and then looks at the physical models that are created.

I do assume you have already created a connection and so if you're struggling with that, here's a screen shot of the connection dialog. Like SQL Developer, you can just make use of the thin JDBC driver to connect to the database, as I have in the example. You probably won't see the extra DB2 and SQL Server tabs I have, unless you've added the required drivers for those. If you want to connect to those databases, then you can add the drivers by using the Tools > General Options settings.

The dialog also supports connecting to your entries in the TNS file and you can add your own custom JDBC URL using the Advanced connection type.

Once you have your connection set up, watch the online demonstration to learn more about what you can import.

30 July 2009

The Data Modeler supports Partitions

So the snag with a new product is to try to show all the features in the product to everyone as quickly as possible. I'm working on the online demos and training internal teams and getting the message out in general, but it's not fast enough. I'm looking forward to the day when you all start blogging about the product. Until that happens I'm afraid we're going to be dipping and diving all over the place. Just wait until SQL Developer 2.1 comes out and this blog becomes a mix and match!

We've recently had the question asking when we'll start support for partitions. The answer is right now. The product already does.

You need to understand the difference between the relational table definition, and the physical definition.

When you start creating the relational model, you create the tables that make up the diagram. The details are listed under tables under the relational node, as shown in this first image. (Click the image to see a full screen shot)

Invoking the properties here for the table, provides a database independent view of the table. So you can specify columns and datatypes and make use of domains at this point. What you can't do is specify the schema details or the other physical properties, like the tablespaces or partitions. This is because not all databases support the same set of physical properties.

The second screen shot shows the property dialog for the table in the relational model. Here you can add columns, set primary or foreign key properties, the datatypes and domains. There are entry point for indexes and a variety of additional features. But you do not set any database specific implementation details.

If you expand the physical model under the main relational model, (select Open from the context menu and select the database you want to support) and then expand the node. This is also shown in the first image above. Now you can view or add partitioning details.

Below are two illustrations, one showing the partition order in the Sales table, which is partitioned by range.

The last of the screen shots displays another partitioned table. The illustration here shows the drop list to show the types of partitioning supported.

The mantra is: The logical model is central, if you like is the core of the product. Each logical model supports one or more relational models. These visual models are database independent. Each relational model supports one or more physical models.

What the next demo to come out later this week, where we import for the data dictionary. That demonstration shows the multiple physical database support.

29 July 2009

New Customer Article on OTN: Getting Started

So there are users articles and there are Oracle product manager articles... sometimes it's handy to get the perspective from someone outside Oracle. Here's one of those opportunities.

If you're just starting out with the Data Modeler, take a look at this latest article just published on OTN. Written by an Oracle DBA, it's a very brief review of how you can connect to an XE database and quickly create a data model using Oracle SQL Developer Data Modeler. His initial experience was with the early adopters and then the production release. It follows on nicely from the last two demos I talked about where you do not need to have a database to create the model. Here you do and is the next demo I'm working on.

25 July 2009

Still no Database? Build a Data Model from a DDL script

In my last post I said that you can use the SQL Developer Data Modeler to build a data model without needing a database, all you need to do is start drawing. Well, you can also create a data model, without a database, but with a DDL script. The Data Modeler page on OTN has a number of the DDL scripts that you can use for this purpose. On OTN they're in zip files for easy download; all you need to do is extract the DDL file and then using the Data Modeler, import the DDL file.

This quick online demo shows you how you can import one DDL script to create an initial relational model and then use the Data Modeler to add the contents of a second file.

Next week we'll start work with a database, so if you haven't got access to one, now is the time to download and install Oracle Express Edition, to use as your sandbox. The next two demos I plan are to connect to the database and import a model and of course the one that follows has to be how to create those update scripts.

24 July 2009

Data Modeler: Getting Started - You don't need a database!

If you are new to the latest tool from the SQL Developer team, then a short live demo might be just the thing you need. The great thing about the Data Modeler is that once you have downloaded and unzipped the product, you can just get going. No need for a database or a connection, just unzip and click the datamodeler.exe to start the product.

Now once the product is started, there is no need to create a project, you can start drawing. Click the tool bar button to create a table and you're off and creating.

Watch this 5 minute online demo to see a few extra tidbits of detail, such as controlling the naming of primary and foreign keys and a brief look at interacting with Design rules.

21 July 2009

Extensions to SQL Developer

I'm pleased to say that there are a few folk who are starting to write about their extensions to SQL Developer. I know there are people who are extending - indeed some customers are building quite extensive extensions , but not a lot of folk are telling us about their experiences.

John Flack recently did a talk about his experiences at the ODTUG conference in Monterey Bay and he has now posted his work. He talks about it on the ITToolbox site, and invites you to keep an eye on that as he plans to add more in time. He's posted the paper on his own site here. If you're building extensions to SQL Developer, or thinking about it, I'd encourage you to take a look, as John had some good examples in his talk and you might be able to pick up an extra tip or two. When I do the demo at events, I tend to add extensions for sub partitions or an extra node in the navigator for dimensions or similar. John has added a node for his instance data. This has the useful advantage that he can drill down through the instance data, using the navigator.

15 July 2009

A Piece of SQL Developer News: 1.5.5

We released SQL Developer 1.5.5 on OTN yesterday.

You may be wondering why we have had so many minor releases of SQL Developer. The main release with all the new functionality is SQL Developer 1.5 and we published a list of the new functionality that went into 1.5. Following a main release we've typically had a significant patch release, which in this case was 1.5.1. The next three releases were minor and while they have each had a number of additional bug fixes, each had a specific role.

1.5.3 - our first Japanese translation
1.5.4 - we added the rest of the languages we'll be supporting Japanese, Spanish, Italian, German, French, Brazilian Portuguese, Simplified Chinese and Korean
1.5.5 - this is the release that is scheduled for 11gR2 and is also on the media pack with the new Oracle SQL Developer Data Modeler.

...and each pulled in a few issues that had raised their heads on the forum, along with few others. Methinks it pays to be involved and active on the forum.

The Data Modeler is drawing lots of interest, which is great news. We've just published a Pricing FAQ on OTN as there has been some confusion on that.

02 July 2009

Oracle SQL Developer Data Modeler is Production

Well,well, well... it's July and in the UK the temperatures have reached the 30's. This might be normal for many of you, but for us, the gardens, the houses and the dogs are not quite used to it. Now for those of you thinking that this has become a biannual weather blog, you might not be far off. Since the last was in January and it was talk of snow...

So the reason for the lack of "blogginess" is multi-fold, some is that I have been working on our new product in addition to SQL Developer and some that I am writing a SQL Developer book. So it's not so much lack of material as lack of hours to write some more...

Now I do have so much to share with you, that I'm really keen to break this silence and get more words to paper (screen). Also there are many lovely little features in SQL Developer 1.5.4 that I find many of you don't know about, when I show them at events, that I should be doing short features more often. Mind you here's a blog on REAL-TIME SQL Monitoring, a feature that I wanted to write about for ages and Doug Burns has done it instead. (Thanks Doug) I've also been sent a list of blog topic suggestions from an attendee at one of the recent events I attended, so there really is no excuse.

Now that new tool: Oracle SQL Data Modeler. It's production! We published all the related material yesterday and hopefully the news won't be overwhelmed by all the Oracle Fusion Middleware 11g annoucements happening this week. Still it's all good and all good news.

You can download it from the main OTN site, as it's a featured download there, or you can go to our Data Modeler homepage for links to the download and the FAQ and other supporting technical docs and examples. This page will be updated fairly regularly as we add more bits of collateral. Remember too to use the SQL Developer forum if you have questions, and when I return from my blogging holiday, I'll mix SQL Developer and Data Modeler news and details here.