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Professional database modeling

Chapter 5

Using The Browser

About this chapter

This chapter explains how to use the Byte Designer dock-window browser .

About The Browser

The Browser is the most important dock-window. The Browser contains the Workspace tab which has the Workspace and all of the Workspace objects organized in a hierarchy. It also has the ODBC tab which allows the ODBC sub-system to be browsed. The objects are represented by an icon, and a name.

Workspace Browser

The workspace browser shows all the loaded workspace objects in a hierarchy. The following is an example of a workspace browser;


The current workspace is called "tutorial" and below this there are two logical models and a project folder. Notice that "cdmaftr" has objects below it while "cdmbefor.LMModel" does not. This is because the 2nd logical model has not been loaded. Documents are not automatically loaded but projects are. The "MySQL" project was automatically loaded when the workspace was loaded.

The workspace browser shows all objects for a loaded diagram/model including the objects which are not drawn on the document itself - such as business rules.

Many objects support special behaviour when <clicked>, <right-clicked>, and <double-clicked>.

Object <clicked>

When an object in the browser is <clicked> it will try to bring the object on the document into focus and select it. This makes the browser handy for navigating the diagram/model and the document drawn objects in particular. Nothing special occurs for objects not drawn on the document.

Object <right-clicked>

Most object types have their own, context sensitive, popup menu. For these objects <right-clicking> on the object in the browser will invoke the popup menu to reveal important options. For example; the popup menu is used to add a file to a project or to connect the project to a database. The following shows the popup menu for a project object.

context menu

Object <double-clicked>

The most common thing to occur when an object is <double-clicked> is for the objects property dialog to be invoked. For some objects nothing special occurs. An important exception to this is document objects. Document objects are not loaded automatically when the workspace and projects are loaded. <double-clicking> an unloaded document object will cause the document to be loaded.

Object Types

The following table lists just some of the many object types to be found in the workspace browser;

A container. There will always be exactly one of these in the workspace browser. Saved as a file with a ".DAWorkspace" extension.
A container. Always in a "loaded" state. Has the ability to connect to DSN. A red indicator means not connected while green indicator means connected. <right-click> object and use popup menu option to connect/disconnect. Saved as a file with a ".DAProject" extension.
A simple folder. Created automatically to help organize some objects.
A document. Loaded when object <double-clicked>. A simple, generic, free-form, diagram. Saved as a file with a ".DDiagram" extension.
logical model
Logical Model
A document. Loaded when object <double-clicked>. Saved as a file with a ".LMModel" extension.
physical model
Physical Model
A document. Loaded when object <double-clicked>.
sql file
SQL File
A document. Loaded when object <double-clicked>. Saved as a file with a ".sql" extension.

Creating Objects

The workspace browser can be used to create some new objects such as; Workspace, Project, and any document object. This is done by invoking the popup menu and selecting the desired option. For example; the Workspace popup menu can be used to create a project object and the popup menu for the project can be used to create a document.

Physical Models and SQL Files should be created under a project object to enable the features which require a database connection.

ODBC Browser

The ODBC browser provides a great way to browse the ODBC sub-system. The top object is always "ODBC" while under it lie "Drivers", and Data Source Names (DSN). The following shows the ODBC browser with a connection to a database (test).


<right-clicking> on the ODBC or on a DSN object reveals a popup menu. You can use these popup menus to refresh the browser contents or connect to the database. A great wealth of information can be provided about a DSN when a DSN is connected but how well this works is largely dependent upon the capabilities of the ODBC driver. Typically the schema can be browsed and a wide variety of information about the driver and data source may be browsed under the "Extended Info" tab.

Object Types

The following table lists just some of the many object types to be found in the ODBC browser;

ODBC Reperesents the entire ODBC sub-system. <right-click> to invoke popup menu.
Drivers Lists all installed and registered ODBC drivers.
system data sources
System Data Sources Lists all System Data Source Names.
user data sources
User Data Sources Lists all User Data Source Names.
data source
Data Source A Data Source Name. <right-click> to invoke popup menu with option to connect. Icon changes when connected and many new objects are created. The new objects reflect any schema information and "Exntended Info" retrieved from the driver and/or connection.