How to Create or Open a Data Model in Oracle SQL Developer

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The Oracle SQL Developer family currently has two ‘SQL Developer’ branded products:

  1. Oracle SQL Developer
  2. Oracle SQL Developer Data Modeler

Oracle SQL Developer is the database IDE and Oracle SQL Developer Data Modeler is our dedicated data modeling solution. Where it gets interesting is that the entire Data Modeler product also runs inside of SQL Developer.

When I do demo’s of building quick ad hoc models in SQL Developer, I’m frequently asked to ‘back up’ and slowly demonstrate how to get started with a model in SQL Developer.

Here’s a quick animated GIF showing you the basics:

Just drag your table to a model

Just drag your table to a model

The Basic Steps

  1. View -> Data Modeler -> Browser
  2. Expand Browser tree and go to ‘Logical’ or ‘Relational’ models node
  3. Expand node and select default model
  4. Right click -> ‘Show’

You can also open an existing model by using the File -> Data Modeler -> Open/Recent Diagrams menus.

A Few Reminders

There’s no difference in the modeling technology between running it stand alone or inside of SQL Developer. The practical differences come down to the user interface, where you see the Data Modeler menu’ing system running under SQL Developer.

You can disable the modeler in SQL Developer (for quicker startup time and less complicated UI) by going to Tools > Preferences > Extensions and disabling ‘Oracle SQL Developer Data Modeler’ and ‘Oracle SQL Developer Data Modeler – Reports.’

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