15 October 2010

SQL Developer 3.0 Does Schema Browsing

I hope you take an opportunity of popping over to Kris's blog - he's just done a piece on the new pdf support in SQL Developer 3.0 The pdf support is great when you export your data you can export it to PDF. But not just that - there are loads of settings to control and format the file. Take a look at his encrypted pdf blog for a taster.

Schema Browsing
I want to tell you about the Schema Browser. This is a great feature for those of you who work with objects you don't own. So for example, if you have access to run queries or update tables that have been created by another schema, in all releases, including SQL Developer 3.0, the way to review these tables is either through the Other Users node or by creating synonyms for the tables and then having the tables displayed via the synonyms in your own connection. So it's a little fiddly. In SQL Developer 3.0, we have added in a new schema browser. To find it, select a connections, right-click to invoke the context menu and select Schema Browser. This opens a new navigator for that schema. Now you can do a number of things.

Firstly, select the schema you want to work with. This is equivalent to finding the user in the Other Users node. Then you can select the object-type you want to work with. Let's say, for arguments sake, that you select tables - You can filter the tables listed. The filter option is the same filter dialog you can use to filter any of the nodes in the Connections navigator.

In the image, I have circled the first two options. The filtering criteria can be set by using the additional drop lists.
There is another filter - it's a client-side filter - and this allows you to quickly filter objects in the already filtered list. In my example, I have a number of tables in the filtered list, and then I have reduced the list further by using the extra client-side filtering.

Try it out.

14 October 2010

SQL Developer 3.0 Does Table API

Well, I couldn't wait a day to do another post. Here is a feature you would not have seen at OpenWorld. SQL Developer 3.0 generates a Table API. Now those of you who go far back enough will know other tools that did this and we have had a number of feature requests to add in a table API generator, so here we go, a TAPI!

Why a Table API? Well, some teams would never dream of letting developers insert, update , delete or generally work directly with tables. Many teams want to track who, what, when, where events and having a Table API (I call them "table wrappers") is a start point to add in that kind of code. Here's how you'll find it:

SQL Developer 3.0 Early Adopter is Available

Same week, new post, different product, new early adopter release. It's busy bees in the development teams as everyone works to settle the releases. You may have heard that we demonstrated SQL Developer 3.0 at Open World in September, and many of you felt the release had to be imminent. Well it was, but we did want to add in a few updates following OpenWorld. So now you have a second product on an early adopter release cycle. There are a few demos on OTN and we get more out to in the next few weeks. Watch Kris's blog and mine in the next month or so and we'll also be bringing you new feature news. In the meantime - download the software. Please provide all feedback on the SQL Developer forum (not here) where the developers will be camping out and helping you out.

12 October 2010

SQL Developer Data Modeler 3.0 - Early Adopter Release

The news just keeps getting better. At Oracle OpenWorld, we announced that the Data Modeler is now a free product. This was very exciting for us and for the many customers who came to talk to us at the show. I'm really pleased as there is no excuse for not modeling your database, or at the very least to connect to a data dictionary and see how your tables are all connected - visually!

The news that the product is free means more than that to us, it now means that we can run a public early adopter program and so you can go, today, and download SQL Developer Data Modeler 3.0 Early Adopter 1. All the features that you used in SQL Developer 2.0 are still there, in addition there are a few new features that I think you'll like. The best bet is to go to the Data Modeler home page and take a look at the online demonstrations available. The first three walk through the new functionality in the product. They're about 12 - 15 mins each and I show the new features and explain as much as I can it he given time. The last two are short viewlets on two aspects of the current functionality. Of course if you know nothing of the product, then just look at the brief online Data Modeler 2.0 demonstration. This is for the current production release, but it'll get you started and the flow of work is the same.

18 June 2010

A Focus on Unit Testing and new supporting material

SQL Developer's Unit Testing feature is doing well. Those who are using this new functionality in SQL Developer 2.1 are finding it very useful and are already asking for more functionality. (Isn't that the way, once you get to grips with a product you can start saying "wouldn't it be good if we could also...") so the SQL Developer Exchange is starting to build up a few requests.

Unit Test Online Demonstrations
For those of you not yet familiar with PL/SQL Unit Testing or have not yet quite got to grips with this feature, we have published a number of new short online demonstrations. You can find these from the Online Demonstrations link on our main page on OTN. All the unit test demonstrations are grouped together, so you can pick the one's you're interested in or watch them all.

Unit Test Webcast
If watching the online demos is not your thing, you can watch the 30 min webcast. The latest webcast was on Unit Testing, which has now been recorded and is available on OTN for you to watch and listen to. All our webcasts are on OTN on the Webcast Series.

18 May 2010

SQL Developer 2.1 Webcast is Published

I started a web cast series a few months ago and am still not sure if this is the right way to spread the news and provide feature demonstrations to the customers. Firstly I'm alternating between SQL Developer and the Data Modeler and so if you're only interested in one area, this is quite a gap. Also there's the whole time zone thing... Where I can only reach half the world in daylight/work hours. Let's see hopw it goes int he next few months.

Anyway, I apologized for the chaos caused when I didn't run up for the event in April, due to longer travel home after the volcanic clouds caught us off guard. Kris ran the event, but not everyone was aware of the dial in changes and so missed the event. I have now recorded and published that session and you can find it on the web casts page on OTN. The session is on SQL Developer 2.1 and the demos cover the new features. It's quite a big file to download, but once done, you can listen/ watch the session at your leisure, with having to worry about Internet latency.

I will not be doing a live web cast on Wednesday 19th as planned. This will be a recorded session and the file will be made available for download from that same web casts page.

07 May 2010

Updating the Database with SQL Developer Data Modeler

This may be one of my most frequently asked questions - "How do I create the "alter" statements to update the database, using SQL Developer Data Modeler?" Most people know how to use the the Data Modeler to generate DDL scripts to create new objects, but not everyone knows how to create the DDL required to update the database. We have created a new online tutorial which walks you through this process. I did mention it recently when I wrote about the new Learning Library, and we have now also added the link to the the Data Modeler page on OTN.

06 May 2010

Data Modeler: Launches the First Public Classroom session

In March this year I attended the pilot of the Data Modeler (Instructor Led Training) class. It was fun because the course writer presented the class and the attendees came from various Oracle offices from around the US and Europe. We all attended for various reasons, but mostly because we'll be working with customers and SQL Developer Data Modeler. The group were/are experienced data modelers, familiar with other tools and getting to know the capabilities of the new tool. This meant a lively interaction throughout the week and feedback rolled into the final training product.

I was a bit nostalgic, as this was my old area, as I was first involved in training then writing courses and running these "train the trainer" events. Anyhow, I'm pleased to say that the course is now up and running and you can start registering for or requesting classes. It's a great class, covering all aspects of SQL Developer Data Modeler, including the Data Flow diagram, logical, relational and physical models, all in the context of designing and developing data models. There are lots of examples and we worked on and developed a number of different models, which kept it all interesting. I definitely recommend this event.

The easiest way to sign up for any Oracle University class is to go straight to http://www.oracle.com and click on the Education. (Alternatively use http://education.oracle.com)
Either way you end up on the education site and in the right hand corner you can search for the class you are after. If you start typing "Data Modeling" in the search list, then a drop list will allow you to select SQL Developer Data Modeling . The class is Oracle Data Modeling and Relational Database Design and the next available event is May, 10th in Chicago! It starts next week and so there is not much time to decide.
If you are not be able to make this one, you can watch out for future classes, or express your interest in a future date or location by providing feedback on the same course detail.

28 April 2010

A Learning Library!

Oracle has added a new Learning Library which will help you when you're looking for demonstrations or online tutorials. This is a neat (Oracle APEX) application which basically provides a new user interface to the same Oracle by Example (OBE) tutorial content available on OTN. The difference is that you don't need to scroll down through lists of OBEs or search various sites to find online demonstrations.

You can find the Learning Library here: http://otn.oracle.com/obe. The material from my team is under the database section, so you can select that node and then add in your search criteria. For example, just add "model" to the search and you'll see the 3 current Data Modeler tutorials and the latest data Modeler tutorial, published just this week.
We also have a new SQL Developer 2.1 New Features OBE.

The library also lists online demonstrations, which are all typically around 3 - 5 minutes long, focusing on just a small feature area. This means that a search for SQL Developer material will result in tutorials and online demonstrations. It saves you wading through endless pages looking for help. Select "All Content" and add the search SQLDEV and you'll find quite a nice long list... Let us know what you'd like to see next!

26 April 2010

Trains,Taxis, Ferries and Apologies

Norwegian User Group

The week before last I went to Norway to present two papers at a new user group. Well, the Norwegian Oracle User Group is not new, but has been running for a few years now. The fun thing is that it's growing each year and so there is now a steady audience. Interestingly enough it's a pretty focused audience of DBAs and Database developers, with the application developers noticeably absent. I think a new stream has potential, JDeveloper? Oracle APEX developers? perhaps you need to look into this event and suggest an application developer addition.

Anyway the novel thing about this event is that it's held on a boat (huge cruise liner /ferry that runs between Oslo and Kiel), so the audience does not wander off to play golf or swim on the sea, as they can do at some events. (Fine for the organizers who have the registrations, not so fine for those of us hoping to talk to a nice big audience.) Anyway, this was good. I had a nice crowd for SQL Developer 2.1 Overview and New features and a nice crowd for SQL Developer Data Modeler. The downside with the latter talk was that I tried to fit in why you should model, how you should model and all the features of the Data Modeler in a single session. I should know better!!

I must apologize to those waiting on the phone or trying to attend last week's SQL Developer 2.1 web cast - to no avail. Kris stood in for me, but he had to use his dial in and conference details and we were unable to get the new details to everyone before the event. The reason I was stuck was because I had been out in Norway when the airports were closed. The web cast was not recorded, but I'll do a cut down recoding and add that to the web cast site later this week.

Following the conference and back in Oslo we had the news that there were no flights out that day and possibly the next. I didn't think much of it. How bad can it be, I'd had my lost suitcase found, so I could stay on a little and fly back on the next available flight. The rest is history... By Sunday there was talk that this might be weeks and by that stage the ferries and various channel crossings were fully booked at least until Wednesday. So we decided the best decision was to make our way home. Here is where the Internet is so powerful and the world a truly amazingly connected place. I sat down and started to plan and book a train journey home. With lots of suggestions offered by friends and passers by, between two of us traveling the same route, we planned and booked a route home.
Starting at 4am on Monday morning, we started on a bus and then a train to get to Oslo, where the journey really did start - then over to Goteborg (Sweden), then Copenhagen (Denmark), then, still by train, across to Germany (with the train ion the ferry) to Hamburg, across Germany to Cologne and then to Brussels and across to the UK London and home, arriving back here on Wednesday night. The time delay was due to some trains being full and having to wait for the later trains. It is the way to travel of course. Assuming you have a seat, this is a much calmer way of crossing continents, and you get a much stronger feel for the vast distances we cover when just hopping on a plane and swapping countries. In all, the journey was a good experience and most travelers in good spirit, with some tales more absurd than others.

12 April 2010

SQL Developer Exchange - Not Just for Feature Requests

Recently I wrote about the SQL Developer Exchange (http://sqldeveloper.oracle.com) , focusing on the new feature requests area. You may or may not be aware that there is also a Tips and Tricks area. Anything you you find useful and want to pass along, just add it here! The latest Tip is on working with SQL Developer and Linux. Srini has a few SQL Developer/Linux blog entries and he's added the latest blog entry to the Exchange and so if you are unaware of his blog and want a quick tip, take a look at the steps in the SQL Developer Exchange | Tips & Tricks section.

09 April 2010

Steven Feuerstein's PL/SQL Challenge

If you have not already seen this then take a look at Steven's latest initiative: "The PL/SQL Challenge " http://plsqlchallenge.com The Challenge was launched on the 1st April and so you can get involved right now. The Challenge should do a number of things, you might "meet" some new PL/SQL whizz-kids or indeed find you are greatly proficient yourself, I'm certain you'll learn stuff and have some fun while you're at it.

As Steven says
"The Challenge is free and simple: you play the quiz each weekday. We keep score. You get ranked. Every three months, the top-ranking players compete in a quarterly championship to award first, second and third prizes. Cash prizes, among others. But that's not all. Every month, we will raffle off other prizes to anyone who played the quiz that month. And the more you play, the greater your chance of winning. "

The site looks great and is easy to get around, you should be able to nip in each day and play. Take a look at the rules too, it all looks like good fun. What's more you'll probably learn bits too, with the Oracle database, rules change over the years, some of the questions and answers may well have you delving into an area you are unfamiliar with or even scratching your head with "I didn't realize that was true". Nice.

08 April 2010

An Oracle Developer Day Near You!

Oracle runs Oracle Developer Days (ODD) for all kinds of topics. Typically they're a 1 day event, jam packed full of information. Most start with a keynote session, and then offer two or more tracks, so you hear a general talk and then have a choice of tracks and subject areas to switch to. In these tracks the speakers go into more detail about the topic. What's more these are designed to introduce you to new subjects, so if you've always worked with one set of products, you can sit in on something quite new and learn. Some include hands-on sessions while others are all presentations, with a variety of speakers who demonstrate the features.

The Database Development Tools PM team are running a series of these Developer Days and the next one is in Orange County, USA. This is a 4 track event, with two main keynote talks in the morning and you get to spend the afternoon doing hands-on. Just bring your own laptop. Read all the details and register by clicking on this event link.

There is another planned for June in Reston, near Washington DC and another in August near Oracle HQ, near San Francisco. These Developer Days are also being run in EMEA (Europe Middle East and Africa) and in APAC (Asia Pacific), so you're sure to find one near you.

31 March 2010

SQL Developer Exchange: Features Requests

Every so often there is a query about the SQL Developer Exchange. (http://sqldeveloper.oracle.com) If you don't know about it, this is the site that we send SQL Developer and Data Modeler users to, in order to log feature requests, add reports and snippets. From the beginning its main function has been as a place to log feature requests and it serves as a really useful link between what we're planning in a release and what the community are looking for in the tool. Many users don't believe we use this site or take the requests into account, if you're one of them, you're much mistaken. In fact we changed plans to add in the SQL Developer 1.5 release based on all the feature requests that had come in.

I have now updated the filter on the Feature Requests page. This filters out all features that have been requested and are now in a release. To see them all, click the red filter cross to remove this filter.

Things to note: If you have logged more than one request in the feature and it's marked as "in release xxx", it may only be one of the features listed in the request that is in the release. It's easier for voters and for us, if you specify a single feature at a time and then give as much detail about what you have in mind. That way others can understand your request and support it or indeed, assign a low score to it.

Here's the list of Status values:

Scheduled for 3.0: This is scheduled for the next release. It means it's in the bug database and is assigned to a developer for the next release. This does not mean it will definitely be in the release, but it's got a good chance.
Accepted: This feature has been read, voted on and accepted as a future request. This means it is in the bug database, but is as yet unassigned, reviewed or written up. Some accepted features may make it into the next release, but not all will. For example, while fixing bugs for the patch release 2.1.1, the developers were able to clear up quite a few of the minor features requests that were related to the features they'd been working on. (See the latest Bugs Fixed list on OTN.)
Under consideration: We've looked at it and we're still thinking about it. This is not yet in the bug database. The next time we do a feature request review we'll revisit these. To add visibility to these, please add more votes and more detail.
Awaiting Community Votes: Hmmm, you really want this feature? Let's hear from others first.
Rejected: Speaks for itself. Nope we're not doing this. See the comment posted on the feature. I sometimes reject duplicate requests, so see what the comment states. If it's a duplicate, find the other one and vote there.
BUG - Log in Metalink: Again, the explanation is in the status. Seems a bit harsh that we won't log the bug from here, but this is not the role of this forum and we don't want that to change. We ignore any bugs logged here.
Closed: This comment/request is no longer relevant. Alternatively you say something like "The product is slow" This is not helpful nor measurable. We also mark Exchange related requests with this.

The Feature Requests Reports
By default the requests are filtered to show you only those requests that are not yet features of the product. Click the red filter cross to remove this filter and you'll be able to search on all requests. When I review the requests I often find quite a few requests for features that are in the product. This may well happen more as the product grows, so before you add a feature, look to see if it's not already been accepted or indeed, may already be in the product.
Dynamic Column Ordering
The interactive reporting in Oracle APEX also allows you to sort and filter the columns based on the column content. For example if you click on the Status column, there is a drop list that allows you to select a specific status or to set the order by on the column. When reviewing the requests, I set the status to Open, and then I order by the Weight. Features with zero weighting, means lows votes and so we generally focus on the high weight requests.
Using Actions on Interactive Reports
When using the Feature Requests page, you can use the interactive report capabilities. For example, click the little green cog next to the Go button, this invokes the action menu and select, for example "Selected Columns". You can use this include or exclude columns in the report. So you can add in the Product column, if you're just looking for the Data Modeler requests. This makes it easier to filter on the product.
Add New Reports
Finally, you can add your own filters and save them. To do this use the Actions menu to add a filter and then, using the same Actions menu, select Save Report. This means that the filter will be saved for you in a new report. Each report you save, gets saved as a new tab and so you can create a number of reports.

29 March 2010

Extensions, extensions extensions...and finally the XSDs.

SQL Developer is developed on an extensible framework. This provides great flexibility for you, the end user, and for teams in Oracle. For example, the Oracle JDeveloper team have built an extension to JDeveloper that provides integrated support for file based version control. With not too many changes, we are able to consume this extension. So when you start SQL Developer, you can open the Versioning Navigator by using View > Team. We only ship the extension for Subversion, but if you want to use CVS, Perforce or Serena Dimensions, then you can use the Help > Check for Updates menu. These additional extensions are listed under the SQL Developer section in the Check for Updates utility.

Extensions are not just Oracle extensions. Last week I updated the Extension Exchange page on OTN to reflect the new customer developed extensions available to SQL Developer users. As ever these extensions cover a broad range of functionality. Instead of itemizing them here, I suggest you visit the page and see if there is something that suits you. Note, not all of these are free. Some offer a 30-day trial license at which point the software ceases to work.
Instead of downloading and following the installation direction, some of these extensions can also be installed by using the SQL Developer Check for Updates utility. You'll still be walked through any licensing agreements, so be sure to read them. The licensing and pricing agreements are in these licenses. You'll find these extensions listed in the Third Party SQL Developer Extensions section in the Check For Updates utility.

There are also Oracle teams who are also building extensions, some working directly with the SQL Developer team, like TimesTen and others working independently, like the Oracle Rdb and Data Mining. In the case of the Oracle TimesTen extension, the extension is automatically shipped and installed when you install SQL Developer; you are only exposed to it if you have the Oracle TimesTen client installed. The Oracle Rdb and Data Mining extensions are both available for download from their sites on OTN. You can reach these through links on the SQL Developer Extension Exchange page. The Oracle Rdb extension is also available under the Oracle Extensions section in the Check for Updates utility.

It would be remiss of me not to mention the Migrations extension while I am here. This extension was built and integrated with SQL Developer some time ago, and so regular users will be familiar with the menu option. Like TimesTen, if you don't have the associated prerequisite files, the extension is not exposed to you and so is not intrusive. In this case, you need to have the required third-party database driver to see the extra third-party database tabs in the connections dialog. Some of these drivers are available through the Check For Updates utility under Third Party.

If you are inspired to write your own extensions then the Oracle Wiki is the place to start. There are examples for both the Java or the XML developer. We have now added the XSDs for the most commonly used areas. The availability of the XSDs is a much requested update to this site, so take a look.

Please post any questions you have on the SQL Developer forum and not as a comment here. There is a broad audience who want to learn about these and so it's better for everyone if the discussion is held there.

25 March 2010

Data Modeler Overview and Demo: Webcast Recording

Last week I did the first in the series of the webcast recordings I plan to do over the next few months. As product manager for both the Data Modeler and for SQL Developer, I have proposed alternating the monthly broadcasts between the two products . So I launched the series with the Data Modeler. Having trialed the webcast internally I was happy that the technology would stand up to the rigors of the international broadcast, as luck would have it, I must have done something wrong on the day and did not get the voice recorded. Technology - who'd have it? Actually - I would! After all these years, I still get a kick out of the fact that I can run a webcast, demonstrate a product and answer questions asked from locations all around the world.

Back to the Data Modeler demo and webcast - I reran the webcast this time recording the sound too. We now have a webcasts web site and the first recording is available for download. It might look a little lonely there now, because it is the first in the series, but this should grow.

This webcast introduces the SQL Developer Data Modeler and then I go into a high level demonstration and feature review.

15 March 2010

US on DayLight Saving this Week - Take Note of Webcast Times

Having been away for a few weeks, I'm now catching up on mail and work and backlog and it seems the US have changed to Daylight Saving while I was out walking...

If you're joining the Data Modeler webcast on Wednesday, please take note that the US times are as originally advertised, and the UK and Europe times are an hour earlier.

For all details on this webcast, please see the details on OTN.

05 March 2010

Oracle SQL Developer and Oracle SQL Developer Data Modeler Public Webcast Series

I have done quite a bit of traveling since October last year. Every other week or so I've been at a conference, training event, user group or special interest group. When I'm back at my desk, I spend a good chunk of time doing webcasts and demos for small groups of people. In all I have noticed that there are growing SQL Developer and Data Modeler audiences, which is great. What I've also found is that lots of folk are using a lot of the features and not investigating further to see what the product has to offer. For some time now Kris and I have discussed the need for a webcast series, where we'd demo features of the product, drilling down into different areas. Both SQL Developer and the Data Modeler audiences need this, so I'll be doing a monthly webcast, alternating between the two products, to show off some of the features, and to drill down into some specific details. I'll kick this series off with an overview of the Data Modeler (this month) and a review of the SQL Developer 2.1 new features, next month. After that we'll start drilling into more of the detail.

First Public Webcast

Here are the details:

17 March 2010
09:00 PST | 12:00 EST | 17:00 UCT | 18:00 CET
  • Introducing the new webcast series
  • Oracle SQL Developer Data Modeler update
  • Product Overview Demonstration
  • Q&A
One Hour

This is general public webcast, designed for anyone interested in or using Oracle SQL Developer Data Modeler

The details of this event will be announced on OTN next week. For more information on Oracle SQL Developer Data Modeler see Oracle Technology Network: http://www.oracle.com/technology/products/database/datamodeler

All calls are recorded and published on Oracle Technology Network.

The next webcast is scheduled as follows:
21-Apr-10: SQL Developer: SQL Developer 2.1 New Features, Q&A

02 March 2010

SQL Developer 2.1.1 is Available for Download

We have just released the first patch release for SQL Developer 2.1. SQL Developer patch releases are full downloads and installs - see the release notes - we call them "patch releases" because they exist only to provide fixes to issues. Most of these are found and reported in the early adopter releases and did not make the production release, some were older issues and some found in the production release. A patch release is not a vehicle for introducing new functionality. As ever, not all bugs are addressed with a patch release and so you should look at the list of bugs fixed or the known issues to determined whether you need or want to make the switch.

There are new bits!
While a patch release is not for new functionality, there are quite a few little additions based on feature requests from the Exchange that have been included in the patch. I blogged about the Font setting earlier in the week, to name but one of these. Take a look at the Bugs Fixed list to see a few of the others. Alternative look at the Exchange and search on Fixed in 2.1.1 to see the new features added.

For links to the downloads, bugs fixes and known issue (listed in the release notes), see the OTN pages for SQL Developer.

In my next blog I'll tell you more about the updates on the Exchange. In the meantime, download and try out 2.1.1.

01 March 2010

Back to Basics: Changing the Font Setting in SQL Developer

An ongoing request in SQL Developer is to have the ability to update the font size in a Data Grid. In the all the releases up to and including SQL Developer 2.1, you can't change the font in the data grid, you can control the full IDE font and the font for the editors, but that's it. Well SQL Developer 2.1.1 has an update to that.

I wrote about changing fonts when we first started SQL Developer, so I'm going to recap the functionality before adding the 2.1.1 tidbit.
The thing about the fonts in SQL Developer is that they essentially controlled through the underlying framework or IDE. (now more commonly referred to as the Fusion Client Platform). So to change the font for the full product, that is the Navigators, Menus, Dialogs and so on, you need to shutdown the product update the font for the IDE, which is locates the ide.properties file in the system folder.

This system folder is created the first time you start SQL Developer and, by default, is located in the C:\Documents and Settings\\Application Data\SQL Developer\system2.\ folder. Once you have located your system folder, find the sub folder o.sqldeveloper. (this is the latest SQL Developer 2.1.1 patch, but you can browse the the version of the product you are working with). Edit the ide.properties file and uncomment the FontSize propert. So change
# Ide.FontSize=11 to your font size of choice, for example;


Restart SQL Developer.

Notice that this does not affect the SQL Worksheet and Data Grids. Once you are back in SQL Developer select Tools > Preferences. Expand the Code Editor node in the tree and select Font. Changing this font setting increases the size of the font for any of the code editors. In SQL Developer 2.1.1, changing this font size also affect the output of the SQL Worksheet script output and the Data Grids.

Of course, there are lots of folk who just want the Editors and Data Grids to be resized, in which case, you don't need to edit the ide.properties file.

This has been a much request feature on our Exchange, I hope the update helps those of you who have been looking for this support.

09 February 2010

RMOUG next week, with a Hands-on University Session

Next week we head for Denver and the Rocky Mountain User Group. This is a great conference; lots of technical talks, lots of networking - sharing ideas and making contacts, and of course, meeting a few friends too!

Some years back the RMOUG committee introduced university sessions on the Tuesday afternoon before the event. Last year I said I'd do this, but I wanted the attendees in my room to bring their laptops and we'd do a hands-on session. By all accounts it was a success. We brought the software and the training material and the attendees installed the bits they needed before setting off.

This year we're doing the same, we're asking attendees to bring their laptops and we're bringing the software for the session. Earlier this year we hosted an Oracle Developer Day and provided a Virtual Machine using Sun's VirtualBox. We learned a lot that day and have spent the last two weeks on and off updating and getting this new Virtual Machine built and tested. The idea is that everything you need is in the Virtual Machine and so once you have finished the afternoon, you can delete the Virtual machine and your computer is the same as it was when you arrived. The added bonus is that we're using Linux as the OS in the Virtual Machine, so can bring you Oracle database 11g Release 2! If you want to join us, bring your own laptop (Windows, Linux, or Mac with minimum 2Gb RAM) and 20 GB free space.

The afternoon includes playing with the Oracle SQL Developer Data Modeler and SQL Developer, where we'll do some PL/SQL work and you can play with the latest feature, the PL/SQL Unit Testing. If that's not enough, we also have a few bits for working with Version Control and user defined extensions. The whole afternoon is guided-free format, so you can selected what you want to work on, and then use the guided hands-on sessions - of course a few of us from the team will be there to help with questions.

...and there may be a book prize at the end... see the latest publication SQL Developer 2.1

I hope to see you there. I think there are a few spaces still.

Check out RMOUG to register: http://rmoug.org/training.htm

06 January 2010

The Book is Published and our Products are Production!

Last year was quite the year for the SQL Developer team, who worked on and released a number of products and releases.

SQL Developer Releases
On the SQL Developer side of things we released:
  • SQL Developer 1.5.4: The first full translation release supporting Japanese, Spanish, Italian, German, French, Brazilian Portuguese, Simplified Chinese and Korean (March 2009)
  • SQL Developer 1.5.5: Shipped with Oracle Database 11g Release 2 (July 2009)
  • SQL Developer 1.5.6: Part of Oracle JDeveloper 11g (July 2009)
and then in December 2009, we released SQL Developer 2.1. This is a significant release for the team with the introduction of Unit Testing and the Data Modeler Viewer. In addition to these two feature chunks, are a multitude of other features. Based on community feedback, the team have rewritten the SQL Worksheet to support the ability to run tasks in the background. Feature lists and details of the new features are on OTN. You can download SQL Developer from OTN and of course get involved in the discussions on the forum. Kris and Barry have been blogging about some of the latest features.

Data Modeler Releases
We also have a few developers on the team dedicated to the Data Modeler. The first production release of SQL Developer Data Modeler was in July 2009 and we released the first patch release in December 2009. This patch release is a full install and addresses many of the initial customer issues.

SQL Developer 2.1 Publication
On a personal note, I spent many a weekend writing last year and in December '09, my book on SQL Developer 2.1 was published. Having been approached by the publisher in 2008, I asked other authors if this was a good idea. I was told there three phases:
  • Before the book - seems like a good idea, what fun and all that.
  • During the book - not a good idea, will this ever end, who's idea was this? and all that
  • After the book - that was easy...where's the next?
Well I'm not sure I've quite reached the last phase yet, but it was a strange and good feeling to finally see the hard copy of the book. The most difficult part of the exercise was writing with the product changing as I was doing so. It is true that most of the product remains the same as in earlier releases, which means that you can and should be able to use the book and stay on SQL Developer 1.5.x or even earlier. In addition to the new features in SQL Developer 2.1, what has changed is much of the look and feel, so menus will be in different places and icons have been updated and so on. We have tried to consolidate menus and tidy things up a bit to ensure we keep an uncluttered UI.
The other snag about writing a book as the product is being developed is that very new features or last minute updates won't make it into the book. The case in point here is that there is no section on Unit Testing. Perhaps next time.
If you have no idea about SQL Developer the first few chapters provide an easy walk through and examples of the product and features. While designed as a "dip in and read" book, the later chapters go into more detail about lesser used features. Although the full read/write capability of the Data Modeler is not part of SQL Developer, there is a complete chapter on this product, allowing you an insight into the complete functionality. You can also use the read-only viewer built into SQL Developer.

In the meantime, I'm going to take back my weekends for photography, my garden, and my other hobbies, so I need to dust down my camera and get out into the country side again. Aah, and the cover shot on the book was taken in Scotland, at the foot of Ben Nevis.

To order the book, use Packt.com, where you can buy the hard copy or an eBook. Packt also provide a list of other book sellers such as Amazon. Happy reading!