I always find it interesting to see what software people are using to build websites. I’m always open to new applications that might make my job easier or less stressful. With that in mind, I’ve decided to start posting reviews and tips about some of the software that I use. Today I’ll be writing a mini-review of an application that I’ve started using to perform routine database maintenance tasks on my development box.
SQL Buddy is a web-based MySQL Administration tool that’s free, open-source, and easy on the eyes. I’ve installed it on my development machine and I’m loving it so far. Most web developers are probably familiar with PHPMyAdmin, and this does pretty much the same thing, but it does it while looking quite a bit nicer. It’s also got some tasteful interface enhancements (yes, that’s code for AJAX minus the abuse) to make the whole thing feel a bit faster. I haven’t done proper benchmarking, but it sure feels faster than PHPMyAdmin on my machine while managing my little databases. And the interface seems pretty well considered. It allows you to easily edit multiple records on a single screen.
It was REALLY painless to install. The download for the program is only 167KB zipped. To install it just unzip and drop it on the server. That’s it. Then point your browser to wherever you placed it and log in as one of your MySQL users. Easy.
I only have minor issues with SQL Buddy. The interface for browsing records in a database looks so much like a regular desktop application that I expected it to work like one, allowing me to click on rows and edit the data in place. Unfortunately it doesn’t work like that. You have to check a box and then hit the edit link to edit all selected rows on another page. It’s a minor issue but I’d like to see it changed. Due to the open-source nature of SQL Buddy I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before someone adds edit-in-place.
SQL Buddy is a nice, simple piece of software that allows you to easily edit your databases from the web browser. I don’t know if it will ever be more popular than the deeply-entrenched PHPMyAdmin as the de facto standard database editor for web hosts and developers, but it’s quickly become my favorite web-based editor. Highly recommended.
Scott, thanks for writing this post. I’m the developer of SQL Buddy. Glad you like my app.
When I created the mock-ups for the interface, I was planning on adding edit-in-place. When I actually started programming the app, I found that edit-in-place didn’t really work that well. For example, some databases can have text fields that hold 10,000 words of text. I found that it was difficult to make an interface that was intuitive. In the end, I ditched edit-in-place and moved to the current model. However, after reading your comments I will consider making some changes to the interface to make it less confusing. Thanks for the feedback.
Hey Calvin. Thanks for stopping by to comment, and thanks for the awesome work you’ve done on SQL Buddy. I’m really loving it.
I hadn’t considered the issue with edit in place for longer field types like text and blob, but I see where it could be a problem. Something that I’ve seen with desktop apps is that they’ll pop out a little multi-line box when you’re editing a field that holds more than a single line of data. You might be able to use a textarea to emulate that in SQL Buddy. Or you could just leave it out, because the solution you’ve got now works just fine. Thanks again!
A most excellent program!
I would like to see a search feature ala HeidiSQL and a ‘Show all’ feature with the pagination, perhaps with the option to limit how many records are shown.