Thanks. I appreciate the answer, but I was hoping for a different one.
IMO, Toad Data Modeler is the best, reasonable-cost data modeler available. I’ve used two other data modeling software packages - ERwin (over 15 years) and PowerDesigner (about two years). Both are more robust and polished than Toad. And extremely expensive. I used ERWin and PowerDesigner because my customers had required it. I bought Toad for use with multiple customers because it was good and I could afford it.
My request above comes primarily from my experience with ERWin. While it had lots of warts, it’s reporting capabilities were quite good. And that’s what I’d like to see from Toad - expanding it’s reporting and other capabilities.
When I get more time, I’d like to add some detailed requests in the following areas:
Better, more granular reporting capabilities - This includes the ability to:
– Include/exclude specific objects (tables, views, etc).
– Save and retrieve ALL report parameters.
– A 1-click selectable option to report the logical (caption) names OR the physical names.
– Include or exclude the selected objects Schema (owner). I.e. exclude Schema for logical (caption) and include schema for physical view.
Improve overall UI functionality - Especially in the area of copying and pasting between data models. (The current method works, but it is counter-intuitive and doesn’t follow norms of cut/copy/paste used in most software. Get a copy of Visio or other good graphics software, create an object, and the copy and paste to another application to see what I mean.)
Exporting data models graphically - E.g. select an object in a workspace, select “copy”, and then paste that into another document (Word, email, etc.).
DDL Generation - Save and retrieve sets of settings. When working with a large data model, I may need to recreate a small number of objects multiple times, then work on another area of the DB and recreate those objects, and then move back to the first area.
Improve speed - While Toad is snappy with small data models (<= 100 objects), it is very slow with large data models. When I reverse engineered one entire database (790 objects), it was extremely slow - opening, closing, reporting, etc. By comparison ERWin and PowerDesigner handled large data models much better. Using ERWin, I was able to work quite quickly with a 1200+ object data model.
I’m committed to Toad Data Modeler and want to see it reach its potential. There is a huge market for Toad among professional database contractors and software developers. Many individuals and companies can’t afford and/or rationalize spending $4,000+ for ERWin or PowerDesigner. So they create data models with pencil and paper, Visio, or other “drawing” tools. I.e. they never realize the incredible value of a good data modeling tool.
I was once on a team whose data base “designer” used nothing to create the database design. He just created and executed table scripts in the DB with no documentation other than comments in the table scripts. When two of us (database professionals) questioned that approach, his reply was, “Data models are just to tell others what you’ve done AFTER you’ve done it.” I.e. he was completely clueless. The DB was only about 50 tables, but it was very poorly designed - unrecognized data relationships, inappropriate denormalization, poor performance, massive rewrites of code to work around the garbage database design, and on and on.
In that project, given the cost of the corporate standard data modeling software (ERWin), there was no way that management would approve the cost to get a license or two. The end result? The project failed miserably and people were fired. I’ve seen variations of this scenario repeated over and over for the last 20 years.
At its price point, Toad can be an effective tool for a large number of knowledgeable professionals and a great educational tool to introduce junior people to the benefits of data modeling.
Keep up the good work.