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Thread: MS SQL EXPRESS database diagram

  1. #1
    Security Intelligence TZ Veteran cash_site's Avatar
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    MS SQL EXPRESS database diagram

    Hi Team,

    I was wondering if anyone knew any good (free) apps to reverse engineer a SQL express 2005 database into an E-R Diagram / UML showing relationships, 1-to-Many, properties etc.

    I know there is a Database Diagram section in the SQL Studio Manager, but it is tedious to manually load the tables, create the links etc... Is there an automated method?

    I've got an old version of StarUML, is there a plug-in to extract the SQL Schema and create the diagrams?

    I've got the ODBC links already created and can access the tables from ACCESS, Visual Studio et al.

    Cheers and TIA!

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  2. #2
    Old and Cranky Super Moderator rik's Avatar
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    Are you just looking for a diagramming program?

    "Dia is a gtk+ based diagram creation program released under the GPL license.

    Dia is inspired by the commercial Windows program 'Visio', though more geared towards informal diagrams for casual use. It can be used to draw many different kinds of diagrams. It currently has special objects to help draw entity relationship diagrams, UML diagrams, flowcharts, network diagrams, and many other diagrams. It is also possible to add support for new shapes by writing simple XML files, using a subset of SVG to draw the shape.
    "

    Linkaging Thingy

  3. #3
    Security Intelligence TZ Veteran cash_site's Avatar
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    Yeah, looking for a diagramming application but one that can reverse engineer my SQL tables and automatically generate the diagrams, their relationships and identify properties such as Primary Keys, and 1-Many connections.

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  4. #4
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    *bump

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  5. #5
    Succeded in braking Windo TZ Veteran Dehcbad25's Avatar
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    Cash, does Visio do what you were looking for? Since you want to do it from a MS SQL database Visio is the only thing I can think of. I realize this post is old but I was wondering if you ever figured out what to use

  6. #6
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    Hi Dehc,
    My current version of Vision 2k3 std doesn't do the diagrams, haven't looked at newer or Pro versions.

    In saying that, I managed to get some sort of scripted diagrams made from Studio manager 2008, and also played around with some UML GPL apps.

    Luckily in the end the there wasn't a real need for the diagram, just for a slide presentation showing that we knew which tables held which fields.

    Thanks Dehc.

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  7. #7
    Titanium Member efc's Avatar
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    I know nothing about this product, however it appears to have a lot of features. Maybe it will work for you. http://sourceforge.net/apps/mediawik...itle=Main_Page
    Linux Mint Debian Edition

  8. #8
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    thanks Efc, i'll check it out

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  9. #9
    Succeded in braking Windo TZ Veteran Dehcbad25's Avatar
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    Cash, since you have a SQL Express database running. do you know if it is possible to have the instance running on the SQL management Studio and still query the database with a connection string?
    We have 2008 here, and our web software connects directly to the mdf file, but I have no clue how to open the database to see the content beside using SQL Studio, which locks the web page from accessing it.

  10. #10
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    Hey Dehc, using SQL Express 2k5, yes I was able to have the Management Studio and application running at the same time, even editing the same data row in the tables...

    I have Native SQL Client service running, and connecting with SQL Authentication... next I use ODBC settings and then ADO or DAO etc for my program to connect to the database through the connection string query.

    Unsure why you're connecting directly to the MDF file? Also check your connection string settings, perhaps you are setting 'LOCKED' mode unexpectedly.

    Let me know how you go.

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  11. #11
    Succeded in braking Windo TZ Veteran Dehcbad25's Avatar
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    The application automatically set the parameters for the connection.
    I haven't worked much with MSSQL. I have worked mainly with MySQL (I am actually currently restoring a MySQL db), but I thought it was weird that the db gets locked after attaching it to the instance. Maybe I am doing something wrong when attaching the db.

  12. #12
    Security Intelligence TZ Veteran cash_site's Avatar
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    Unsure of your environment, or where the MDF came from...

    Firstly, backup your database from the original server, then dismount the database from the server. (This should close all network connections, and hence no 'locks')

    Then ensure the previous SQL Server (MySQL or MSSQL etc) services are stopped, and only have SQL Express running.

    Start up SQL Express Management Studio and log-in with dbo credentials (while not best practice, i use the venerable SA account)

    Then in the databases tree, right-click and 'Attach...' , Browse for your MDF file, and click OK.

    Make sure you program's connection string is now pointing to your new MS-SQLExpress instance.

    If still problems, try posting your current connection string, and we can check out the parameters for you.

    Goodluck.

    --- 0wN3D by 3gG ---

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