Review: Superior SQL Builder
Superior SQL Builder 1.5
Red Earth Technologies
+ 61 7 5534 6551
As you might guess from the name, this product is a builder for SQL
statements. But it's a whole lot more than that. It's also a bit
different from other products in the field, so let's start by walking
through the process of building a SELECT statement:
- Create a new project and connect it to your favorite database using
the standard OLE DB connection dialog box.
- Drag the Tables template to the workspace. Double-click the instance
on the workspace and select the tables that you want to work with (the
tool for doing this looks a lot like the Access relationships window).
- Drag the Query Builder template to the workspace.
- Drag the output node of the Tables element to the input node of the
Query Builder element.
- Double-click the Query Builder element to open a typical multi-pane
SQL builder. Use this to graphically create your query from the tables
- Click the Generate Script button to see the results.
That may seem like a lot of work just to build a SELECT - until you
realize it's just a simple example of an overall paradigm. The key is
that you can add as many templates as you like to the workspace, hook
them up together, and create a script. The end result is a mix of some
DTS capabilities, a flexible query builder, and some other tools. For
example, you can build a script that grabs a couple of tables, scrubs
rows from one that don't appear in the other, joins them, builds a
query, and then outputs the results as an HTML table. Click the Generate
Script button, and you've got HTML ready to go.
The product comes with two separate libraries of templates. The SQL
Scripting Library contains a couple of dozen templates that do things
like select tables, create indexes, build queries, update values, and so
on. The Database Data Extraction library can create CSV, HTML, INSERT
statements (useful for scripting data instead of just schema), XML, and
Not enough flexibility for you? You can go beyond the supplied libraries
by creating your own libraries and your own templates, using the Visual
Scribe scripting language. Looks to me like you could turn this product
into a specialized code generation tool with a bit of template-writing
effort. If you need any sort of ASCII output, especially with database
inputs, and the visual design environment appeals to you, take a look.
There's a free 14-day trial on the Web site.
Mike Gunderloy has been developing software for a quarter-century now, and writing about it for nearly as long. He walked away from a .NET development career in 2006 and has been a happy Rails user ever since. Mike blogs at A Fresh Cup.