REVIEWER: Mark Kikuchi, vice president of technology for ErMark Solutions.
BACKGROUND: ErMark Solutions provides database marketing solutions offering analytics and reporting.
PLATFORMS: We use mostly SQL Server but have used ModelRight to reverse-engineer Oracle databases and have built small MySQL databases.
PROBLEM SOLVED: ModelRight allows me to quickly reverse-engineer existing databases and visually review its structure to plan a course of action to build new databases or enhance existing databases.
PRODUCT FUNCTIONALITY: Once our database is in ModelRight, it is easy to maintain and to visually walk through enhancements with clients and developers. The integrity of the database can be improved by adding various constraints and validations. All relationships are easily identified. All changes are self documenting and will show up in different reports. Beside the obvious benefit of a database modeling software, I find ModelRight a very important tool in communicating all aspects of the database to systems analysts and developers alike. All too often, a new requirement is discovered or an enhancement is approved which requires altering the database. ModelRight's ability to compare the model to the database and generate the needed script saves countless hours.
STRENGTHS: ModelRight's ease of use, performance, functionality and support are its strengths. In addition, ModelRight's Visual Basic Scripting is easier than competitors. While I am not a VBScript expert, I do know of its programming capabilities. More importantly in VBScript, I can access any object or property that is used in the model. ModelRight built a solid framework and exposed its objects generically to VBScript. This allows me to write my own custom features. We needed this level of flexibility.
WEAKNESSES: Although I am very satisfied with the capabilities and functionalities that ModelRight offers, ModelRight doesn't handle or support logical database design and doesn't support Informix, Ingres, SAS, Red Brick, Sybase or Teradata.
SELECTION CRITERIA: This product was selected for its value and credibility. ModelRight offers a robust set of functionality and features. It was developed and is owned by Tim Guinther, who led the original product development team for ERwin.
DELIVERABLES: ModelRight allows us to provide entity relationship diagrams and a data dictionary report to supplement the technical documentation. Sometimes we have to provide databases in DDL & DML, and ModelRight quickly documents this deliverable for us.
VENDOR SUPPORT: We found the training videos online to be extremely useful. ModelRight is very easy to implement and easy to use. That's what so great about it: It's a powerful tool, but not complex to use. The best part about working with ModelRight is ModelRight's support, which was a big surprise to me. I came across a problem where the default values where not including the schema declaration when being bound to a column. I had to fix the output script manually, which was a bother considering the tight project timeline. I emailed ModelRight's customer support with my problem, and they responded within hours, telling me that the problem would be fixed in their next build. Six days later, I receive an email that the problem had been fixed and to upgrade to the next build. ModelRight is a friendly, intuitive and fully functional database modeling tool that provides exceptional value. Technical support is responsive and excellent. I would highly recommend it to anyone with modeling needs.
DOCUMENTATION: My experience with ModelRight's documentation is light. I began using ModelRight straight out of the box. I viewed each of the training videos on ModelRight's site. They provided an excellent overview of all of the major functions and are divided into logical categories such as the user interface, forward and reverse-engineering and reporting.
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