Tools for Oracle database admin, and also Design and Development

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Oracle 9i
I was out of the Oracle world for three years (using 7.4?), and now knee deep in alligators with little time to review market offerings. I am using Oracle Enterprise Manager for 9i and very happy with it. An Embarcardero vendor has contacted me a couple of times, but I've had little time to investigate anything. Anyone have any notes on other tools out there for DBA work as compared to OEM, or for design/development? We are in a Java Sun environment, using PC clients also, and will also be looking at JDeveloper. My own background is Oracle Designer/Developer, little Java, big on OOA, ERD, doing well engineered design first. My current role is DBA, data architect, all things database. Thanks in advance!
ASKED: May 27, 2004  2:23 PM
UPDATED: June 3, 2004  3:00 PM

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Our shop has gone from not being satified with OEM in 7.x and 8.x to very pleased in 9.x. We still have and use the Quest toolset for DB Administration tasks. There are some things each tools does better than the other. If we had to choose at this point, OEM would win since it is part of the Oracle package and factored into our license. This would not have been true prior to 9.x.

As far as data modeling from a purely relational point of view ERwin provides every bit of the functionality that Designer did and is not near the bloated behemoth that Designer was. I cannot vouch for its OO capabilities.

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  • Mljsher
    I recently completed an evaluation of Embarcadero Database software, and was very impressed by it. We didn't move forward because it is quite expensive. Another alternative is BMC Patrol, a product that has come a long way since its inception. Their price is a little more reasonable.
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  • Catalysttx
    Hmmm....everyone has their own opinions on sw, and I'm not looking to start a war with anyone that likes Embarcadero products :-), but I think that the 9i OEM, for free, does most of what the comparable Embarcadero product (DBArtisan) does, at much greater expense. What DBArtisan does do better, imho, is DDL extraction, but this does not make it worth the cost. Another benefit of DBArtisan that is realized if individual members of your team cross platforms that they support, the same tool can be used. One of the things I do not like about DbArtisan is that they are less than forthcoming about known bugs in their product, which can be dangerous in a DBA tool. Several releases back, I used it to extract DDL to move a datawarehouse, and when I recreate the bitmap indexes using DDL generated by DBArtisan...guess what....it left 'bitmap' out of the create index statement. I think a dba tool has to be as rock solid as possible, and make information on known problems available to customers. I've used DBArtisan for years, but with 9i, I'm an OEM convert. >
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  • Oconnra
    I agreed with the other responses. To add my 2 cents - I also use OEM to do 90% of DBA tasks. My team has TOAD licensed and there are a couple things I like about Toad. I really like the Tablespace tab and the list of objects in a tablespace. Of course the serious DBAs can do all of this from the command prompt.
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  • Mljsher
    I agree with the general assesment of OEM vs. Embarcadero. OEM can do almost everything Embarcadero can do, and the cost savings is obvious. We looked at Embarcadero because of something it could do that OEM couldn't, and we still couldn't reconcile the price. Besides, I got my first look at OEM in 10g the other day, and, if you like OEM in 9i,...
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  • Abkeyte
    Hello, We've been using Embarcadero's products for several years now and can fully recommend them to anyone. The management tool, dbartisan is wonderful and allows the extraction of ddl in a manner we needed in that we wanted to separate indexes and constraints from the table creation statements. Erwin always puts the indexes in the same tablespace as the table and requires extensive hand editing to resolve these types of issues. We use ERStudio in place of Erwin for the logical and physical design work. For reverse engineering - it's head and shoulders above erwin. Taking a fairly large and complex application (with no ERD or other db documentation) and trying to break it down into functional components that can be understood is simple with ERStudio. I took a large application (after trying for 2 weeks with erwin to break it into several smaller functional models) and broke it into 26 separate functional models using ErStudio's sub model tools in four hours. Very intuitive and easy to use. We've evaluated every version of OEM, and while they're getting better and better, they can't keep pace with Embarcadero's tools. Part of our fondness for them is due to the fact that we have DB2, Sybase, MS SQL Server and Oracle all in house and we can manage all of these from one front-end using these tools. Pricey? Yes. But, worth every penny.
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  • Smeagol
    I've been quite happy with a combination of OEM, Toad and the command line for day to day work, and ERwin for design. We also have multiple databases but use the vendor-supplied GUIs for Oracle and SQL Server. Both have come a long way since their early days and are effectively free (which is a hit with budget-conscious management). As our DBAs tend to work on 1 DBMS each, commonality isn't an issue for us.
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  • Pegasusdba
    Thanks for the input on Embarcadero's ERstudio. I'll have to get around to trying it. This question is really two, I think. It asks recommendations for 1)database administration and 2)design tools. 1) I've used ERwin and qDesigner (Quest) and have found the forward and backward engineering/synching to be more complete and easier in ERwin. Does anyone have a comment on using Oracle's Designer for such uses???? 2) I like OEM and am looking forward to trying 10g version. Toad Suite (having more DBA features) is quite good as well.
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  • Candyrob
    Thanks to all for your responses. It sounds to me like OEM will do the job for now, and that I should look into ERwin for data modeling and design. I used to use Oracle's Designer and Developer 2000 (when they first came out). How do these Oracle offerings stack up against ERwin? Thanks!
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