A Database Diagram Designer Built for Developers and Analysts

Anthony Thong Do
Published in
4 min readOct 7, 2018


Starting as a feature developed by our interns to help our customers visualize their database schemas at holistics.io — Business Intelligence Platform, we found out the opportunity to release dbdiagram.io as a standalone tool to contribute to data community.

That’s how dbdiagram.io built, a quick and simple database designer which is optimized for data analysts and developers to help them design database diagrams by just using their keyboard.

How dbdiagram.io makes your life better 😌

0. It’s free — Free to design, Free to share

1. Smooth experience — Designed with Data Analysts and Developers in mind

As Data Analysts and Developers, we all know the truth that sometimes mouse just doesn’t work. Understanding that, while other tools focus on the experience that you need to x2-click to create a table, x2-click to create a field, x2-click to change the value, dbdiagram.io brings you an experience where typing is just enough. Let’s see how it works:

The UI/UX: Just simply open dbdiagram.io and start designing your diagram

  • The Toolbar — to manage your diagrams, import, export, login and share with others
  • Code Editor — where you add tables, fields and relationships, simple rule, you type the diagram appears ✨
  • Diagram — to zoom in/out, move your diagram

Create Tables and Fields: To create tables and fields, follow the syntax below and type into your code editor on the left

Table tablename {
field1 type PK
field2 type
users {
id int PK
email varchar
gender varchar
relationship varchar
dob datetime
country int
Table countries {
code int PK
name varchar
continent_name varchar

Create Relationships: When you need your mouse, you have your mouse. For the relationships, it would be more intuitive to interact on the diagram, so we support creating relationships both by typing the code and by dragging from field to field

//3 Relationship Types
// < one-to-many
// > many-to-one
// - one-to-one
//Long-form syntax
Ref name-optional { table1.field1 < table2.field2 }
//Short-form syntax
Ref name-optional: table1.field < table2.field2
Ref users.country < countries.code

2. Import and Export on demand

  • Visualize your database within seconds by importing from your existing PostgreSQL or MySQL scripts
  • Export to PDF/PNG/SQL Scripts or Share easily with others
  • Since we are using DSL (Domain-specific Language) we can easily add Import/Export for other databases later, please feel free to let us know! 👐

3. Tips

  • 🖱Double-clicking on any table label will navigate you to the definition of your table code
  • 💾 Ctrl/Cmd + S to save your project
  • 🤔 The code editor is too small, drag the edge to make it bigger

Sample Database Diagrams

With the mission to contribute more to the community, we also hope that the community also uses dbdiagram as a tool to share their project with others. Here are some sample database schemas that we have designed.

👉 Sample E-commerce Schema

👉 Sample Airbnb Schema

If you love it, please spread your love with the hashtag #dbdiagram.io! Feel free to add your feedback here!



Anthony Thong Do

Entrepreneurship, Product, Data, Design | holistics.io, dbidagram.io | anthonytd.com | 200% on Products

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