Top 10 MySQL GUI Tools
May 12, 2010
Many third parties create rich applications to facilitate database management, database development and database administration. Here are ten outstanding graphical interfaces for MySQL.
Most relational databases, with the notable exception of MS Access, are comprised of two distinct components: the back-end, where the data is warehoused, and the front-end, a user interface for communicating with the data component. This type of design is quite clever, as it parallels the two-tier programming model that separates the data layer from the user interface and allows the makers of the database software focus on their products strongest suit: data storage and management. It also opens the door for third parties to create rich applications to interact with various databases. Such products include Embarcadero Rapid SQL and Oracle SQL Developer. Here are ten outstanding graphical interfaces for MySQL.
Manufacturer: Sun Systems/Oracle
MySQL Workbench is a visual database design tool that integrates SQL development, administration, database design, creation and maintenance into a single development environment. It is the successor to DBDesigner 4 from fabFORCE.net and replaces the MySQL GUI Tools Bundle. The current version is 5.2, the earliest version being 5.0, which emphasized the fact that MySQL Workbench was developed as the successor to DBDesigner4.
Manufacturer: PremiumSoft CyberTech Ltd.
A 30-day trial version is
Navicat for MySQL is both a database administration and development tool. It works with any MySQL database server from version 3.21 or above, and supports most of the latest MySQL features including triggers, stored procedures, functions, events, views, and user management.
3. Sequel Pro
Manufacturer: The Sequel Pro Project (open
Sequel Pro is a FREE open-source application. It is the successor of the CocoaMySQL Mac database management application. CocoaMySQL was the brainchild of Lorenz Textor, who was the main developer of CocoaMySQL from its early beginnings in 2003.
Sequel Pro is an application used to manage MySQL databases (locally or over the Internet). It lets you add and remove databases and tables, change fields and indexes, view and filter table content, add, edit and remove rows, perform custom queries, and dump tables or entire databases.
It is compatible with MySQL 3.x, 4 or 5.
Manufacturer: Ansgar Becker
HeidiSQL, previously known as MySQL-Front, is a FREE and open source client developed by German programmer Ansgar Becker and a few other contributors in Delphi. To manage databases with HeidiSQL, users must login to a local or remote MySQL server with acceptable credentials, creating a session. Within this session, users may manage MySQL Databases within the connected MySQL server, disconnecting from the server when done. Its feature set is sufficient for most common and advanced database, table and data record operations but remains in active development to move towards the full functionality expected in a MySQL Frontend.
A version written in Java, jHeidi, which is designed to work on Mac and Linux computers, also exists. Unfortunately, the project has been discontinued since March 2010.
Manufacturer: The phpMyAdmin Project (on Sourceforge)
PhpMyAdmin is a FREE software tool written in PHP intended to handle the administration of MySQL over the Internet. PhpMyAdmin supports a wide range of operations with MySQL, the most frequently used being the managing of databases, tables, fields, relations, indexes, users, permissions. You still have the ability to execute SQL statements directly as well.
Tobias Ratschiller, then an IT consultant and later founder of the software company Maguma, started to work on a PHP-based web front-end to MySQL in 1998, inspired by Peter Kuppelwieser's MySQL-Webadmin. He gave up the project (and phpAdsNew, of which he was also the original author) in 2000 because of lack of time. By that time, phpMyAdmin had already become one of the most popular PHP applications and MySQL administration tools, with a large community of users and contributors. In order to coordinate the growing number of patches, a group of three developers, Olivier Müller, Marc Delisle and Loïc Chapeaux, registered the phpMyAdmin project at SourceForge.net and took over the development in 2001.
6. SQL Maestro MySQL Tools Family
Manufacturer: SQL Maestro Group
SQL Maestro Group offers complete database admin, development and management tools for all the most popular DBMS. Via the GUI interface, you can execute queries and SQL scripts, manage users and their privileges, import, as well as export and backup data. Moreover, you can generate PHP scripts for the selected tables and queries and to convert any ADO-compatible database to a MySQL database.
The bundle includes:
SQL Maestro for MySQL
Data Wizard for MySQL
Code Factory for MySQL
PHP Generator for MySQL
Nerocode SQLWave is a MySQL GUI Client tool designed to automate and simplify the database development process. It also provides an easier way to explore and maintain existing databases, design compound SQL statements, query and manipulate data in different ways. MySQL 4.x - 6.x compliant.
A 30-day trial version is available.
8. dbForge Studio
DbForge Studio for MySQL offers visual MySQL development and administration.
There are three editions: Express, Standard, and Professional.
Express is a FREE application that provides basic functionality for working with schema objects, user accounts, SQL scripts, and queries.
Standard includes additional tools for database administrators and developers, such as a debugger, Query Builder, code templates, object search, various export and maintenance wizards.
Professional is the most full-featured version and adds the following functionality: database projects, accurate comparison and synchronization of database structures (schema comparison) or database content (data comparison), debugging stored procedures and scripts, complex query creation.
Other tools from dbForge include:
9. DBTools Manager
Manufacturer: DBTools Software
Both include Support for MySQL 3, 4 and 5.
10. MyDB Studio
Our final entry is another studio containing a complete collection of tools for MySQL Server administration. Developers will appreciate its ability to create/edit/drop database objects, DB synchronization, and data export/import. DBAs can also use MyDB Studio to perform database migration, as well as backups and restores. It supports SSH tunneling to secure your connections, which allows you to connect even if your host doesn't allow you remote access connection, user and privilege management, and PHP script creation.
I am confident that you will find a product to suit your needs in this group. They are in no particular order, so feel free to try any that catches your eye. I should also point out that I received absolutely no financial compensation from any of these companies. My assessment of each product is based on my unbiased opinion. As such, my top ten list may diverge slightly from the general consensus.