DB Optimizer – database software review
Database performance tuning can be complicated even for a DBA. In many cases a database just seems like as a big black box. Recently I’ve had a chance to review database software called Embarcadero DB Optimizer XE that tries to open that black box for database developers and a DBA.
DB Optimizer is a heterogeneous tool for performance tuning on major database platforms such as Oracle, DB2, MS SQL Server and Sybase. It’s targeted for developers to help them write code, get a view of the performance of their code on the database, identify any performance problems and find solutions. All of this is from a single integrated interface with the following key features:
– Profiling database load
– SQL Tuning
– Load testing of SQL statements
– SQL IDE (code templates, syntax checking, error fixing)
I tested briefly a free version of DB Optimizer 2.5.1. Unfortunately I could not see all of its features as some of them are available only in the retail version. Nevertheless I have to admit I like the software very much mainly because of the following great and unique features:
– SQL Profiling – it clearly shows load on the database providing graphic visualisation based on the Average Active Sessions (AAS) methodology
– Useful Entity-Relationship (ER) diagram in SQL tuning
– SQL Loader in a profiling session (even Oracle OEM does not provide that!)
– SQL IDE quick fixes
– WIKI context help with wait events description
– Support for major database platforms
From my point of view of an expert who does database administration and development on different database platforms I see a slight issue in a product scope. It looks more kind of SQL Optimizer rather then Database Optimizer since the functionality that the tool provides is not enough to do all the aspects of the database optimization. As a DBA, I would love to have that functionality for example as an addition to Embarcadero DBArtisan. From the other side, it’s stated the tool is targeted for developers but it does not provide the database development functionality. Again, DB Optimizer can be ideally a part of development software since having a separate tool for just SQL tuning is expensive in terms of development effort and budget spent. The last point, I see the software is required considerable database knowledge that the modern developers often miss – I would say it’s more for an experienced DBA or very experienced developers :).
Software review details
The software review details along with some thoughts and suggestions I’ll post into Embarcadero Forum.