Your Guide to New Features in Oracle SQL Developer version 3.1

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Did you miss the big news yesterday? We released the next version of Oracle SQL Developer, 3.1. SQL Developer is the IDE for the Oracle database. Millions have downloaded it, more have used it. We try to do one to two releases a year and look to support those folks doing development, management, modeling, migrations, reporting, data mining, … you get the idea!

Don’t have version 3.1 yet? Go download it NOW.

Today I wanted to take a step back and talk about some of the work we did over the past few months. And by ‘we’, I mean people other than me, the developers who actually make SQL Developer. Much of the work came directly from our users via the Feature Exchange. It says we’ve implemented 410 ideas so far, but I’m thinking that needs updating 🙂

Anyways, what you’re about to read is NOT an exhaustive list. Rather, it’s what caught my eye as an ORACLENERD and as the Product Manager. The official ‘hey looky here, is this not the best thing ever’ list is here if you are looking for that.

A quick note regarding our release notes – the list of bug fixes and new features isn’t exhaustive either. The bug fixes are confined to bugs that were reported by customers. You can imagine the number of bugs we caught internally – so if you are wondering if something is fixed, the best bet is probably to download 3.1 and try it out. The ‘New Features’ list is also not complete. Many widgets were polished, many buttons were added. This page is what you’d see in a fancy brochure for a car versus what’s detailed in the Haynes manual.

I know it can be difficult to nose around the release notes and check out all the different application menus to see what’s changed. If you’re lucky you might stumble across a feature or run into a colleague that can point you in the right direction. I’d like to even your odds and get you to ‘the good stuff’ today!

So, in NO particular order:

Database DIFF no longer requires an Enterprise Editioned Change Management Pack database license

That’s right – you can now generate your change DDL scripts for FREE. The feature itself has also undergone quite a bit of improvements from version 3.0. If you haven’t seen it before, check it out under Tools – Database Diff. And I fibbed a little bit, I said in no particular order, but there’s a reason I listed this feature first 🙂

PDF Reporting Improvements

The reporting is a very popular feature in SQL Developer, and I see a lot of very cool stuff happening in the next few releases. Version 3.1 saw several big improvements including the ability to set some page specific options and to encrypt your reports with a password. If you are new to the reporting feature, check out this new 2 minute movie that takes you through the basics.

I’ve also blogged a few posts where I do some basic ‘play’ work with the reporting:

The Cart

Available under the View menu, the SQL Developer cart allows you to script your migrations for moving objects and their data to new Oracle instances. You can add pre and post script routines. It basically takes several individual features and melds them together for a much improved experience. You’ll see the Cart come into play in the very near future when our Database Public Cloud goes live. You can read my take on the cart here –

DataPump, RMAN, and other fun DBA stuff

Wait you say, Data Pump isn’t JUST for DBAs! You’d be correct, and that would also explain why we put it into SQL Developer 🙂 You have wizards for building export and import Data Pump jobs. If you haven’t discovered the DBA panel, now is the time! Go to View – DBA.

Just answer the questions and you're ready to Pump!

We have a series of movies for this feature as well. If you’d like a more in-depth overview of the wizards, then I recommend checking out Tim’s post on ORACLE-BASE.

Folks that need help managing their backups can now do so via Recovery Manager and SQL Developer.

File Logging

This is a LITTLE feature, but I love it. When using the file explorer dialog to open or save a file in SQL Developer, that’s now shown in the Log panel. So, when you create the XLSX file, you can now simply click into it. You can also mouse over the hyperlinked text to see WHERE you put those darn files 🙂

And there’s more!

But I don’t want to bog you down with more homework. Go play with version 3.1 and come back and tell us what we left out and what more needs to be done in version 3.NEXT!

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