I woke up this morning tired of phpMyAdmin, and decided to take a stand.
phpMyAdmin is a web-based tool that most big hosting companies use for their shared hosting plans. It’s powerful in terms of the set of features it supports, but it’s NOT powerful in terms of ease-of-use and how much I can get done per minute using its interface. I think the reason all the big hosts use it is because of its long-time focus on security. After all, fewer customers will blame the host for a bad interface to the database as compared to the customers that will go nuts at the sight of any security issue (even though the customer himself is almost always at fault).
Anyway, there are several much better alternatives to phpMyAdmin (my favorite first):
- SQL Buddy – Looks great, works great?
- MonoQL – Looks even better, but it’s very new… where the documentation?
- Adminer – Unlike the above two, this one is not AJAXified (aka Web 2.0). It’s just a leaner, cleaner, and more natural phpMyAdmin
Now on to the topic suggested by the title of this post… There are generally three things I do with a database:
- View table data.
- Edit table data.
- Edit table structure.
It hit me this morning, as I was sipping coffee in my despair over phpMyAdmin, that I do (1) a lot more than (2), and I do (2) a lot more than (3). Moreover, I really only want a better interface for (1) and maybe (2). So basically I just want a sexy Web 2.0 way of viewing table data. Luckily, jQuery inspired a ton of people to develop just such tools. Here are some awesome-looking examples (my favorite first):
- jQuery Grid
- SlickGrid – A lot of people really like this one, but I don’t get it. The provided examples don’t sort the columns when the column header is clicked.