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June 25, 2011

SQL Reverse Engineer - Learn the Database System from Database Tables and Data

Today we will look at two powerful free tools which would help to understand the database based on data and schema. Data Surf and SQL dependency & live entity ER diagram tool are very interesting and impressive tools.

First tool for Discussion is Data Surf. Analyze the table based on Data.  This helps to understand data flow, relationships between tables.

Let's get started
Step 1. For this example lets download adventureworks database. Download adventureworks from link

Step 2. Download the tool from link

Step 3. Install AdventureWorks database. After installation you would see the new databases as in below snapshot

Step 4. Double click on Atlantis Data Surf link placed in desktop

Step 5. Select the Server and Database name to get started

Step 6. Select the Table in next step

Step 7. Select the rows from the table to view relationships / dependencies

Step 8. Based on the select row, You can view parent and child records. In SSMS, You would check with schema, foreign key dependencies. This is a very cool way to view relationships, foreign keys, visualize data flow

Great Tool. Nice Approach to understand Database Tables. Thanks to the creator of this tool for providing this as Free tool.

Next tool is SQL dependency & live entity ER diagram tool

You are going to work on larger database system. You need to understand tables and relationships. You would like to learn it interactively. Analyzing based on schema, viewing multiple levels of dependencies is possible with this tool. Both the tools help us visualize the entities in database.

Step 1. Download and Install the tool from link. We will reuse AdventureWorks Database for this example

Step 2. After Installing the tool, Provide Database and Server Details to get started

Step 3. Select the table to view schema details and dependencies. I like the Grid View Layout Approach

Step 4. To view two level relationships you can select the option as highlighted below.

I'm Impressed with this two tools. They would be of great help for learning any backend system.

Happy Learning and Reading!!

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