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Database Diagrams Help Expand / Collapse
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Posted Thursday, June 13, 2013 4:29 PM
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Had a question about database diagrams.

We want to set up a diagram to mainly get the benefit of visualizing our data, and establishing the relationships. The tables we have are old and do not always have a simple key.

The diagram seems like a good fit, but does anyone know if we can set it up so that the relationships set up in the diagram do not enforce any rules or effect the tables the reference in any way? We don't want to effect the tables, only get a layout of the data we have.

Is there a better tool to use outside of Management Studio 2008 R2 to set up these relationships for visualization only?

Any help would be appreciated!
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Posted Thursday, June 13, 2013 4:53 PM


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I personally prefer Visio because I can get as detailed or as generic as I like. Also it's what I'm the most comfortable with.

ERWin is another heavily used application for things like this, and gives you the layer of disconnect where you can either model existing or model there and then enforce it on existing. It's a pretty neat tool once you get used to it.



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Post #1463351
Posted Thursday, June 13, 2013 5:10 PM
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Ok I really appreciate the suggestions. Do you know if by using the database diagram you can set it up so that you can make sure you don't change any actual data or enforce rules onto those tables you diagram?
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Posted Thursday, June 13, 2013 5:25 PM


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I believe you can (as of '05 you could). You have to do it manually though. It can only auto-generate from existing Relational Integrity rules. It's been a while since I fought with it though, mostly because printing the thing is such a pain in the arse.


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Post #1463358
Posted Thursday, June 13, 2013 5:46 PM
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Yea our tables don't have any relational information set up, they are coming from and AS400 into SQL server and no one really knows how they tie so we are trying to setup a road map per say. If you have any ideas or suggestions on where to look to see how to set up the diagrams without effecting the actual data or tables I would sincerely appreciate it. Otherwise I may look at the ERwin to see what it can do and cost etc...
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Posted Friday, June 14, 2013 6:44 AM
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The database diagram tool in SQL Server can create relationships, which does modify the tables. If you want to create the diagrams for visualization only, I'd also suggest using something else like Visio suggested above.


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Post #1463532
Posted Friday, June 14, 2013 7:35 AM


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I also use Visio for reverse engineering database models. The Database Diagram will change your objects, however if you need to use it then you can restore your database onto a dev server purely for your diagram.




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