DBeaver Documentation

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ER Diagrams

ER diagrams appear on the rightmost tab of the Database Object Editor:

Entity Relation Diagrams (ERD) are graphic presentations of database entities and the relations between them. DBeaver allows you to view the diagrams of existing tables and whole database schemas, see Database Structure Diagrams. DB also allows the creation of custom diagrams, see Custom Diagrams.

Both types of diagrams provide the same tools to adjust their view and structure. They can be printed and exported to image file formats.

Selection of Elements in Diagrams

You can use one of the two tools to select elements in diagrams:

  • Select – supports both, single and multi-select modes. To select a single element (table, connection, entity inside a table) in a diagram, just click that element. To select multiple elements, similar to using the Marquee tool, click outside the first element and draw until all elements you need are in focus:

Structure Adjustment

NOTE: All changes to existing database schemas cannot be saved and are intended for exploration purposes only.
You can do the following structural changes in the diagrams.

  • Add new tables to a diagram by drag-n-dropping them onto the diagram field from the Database Navigator.
  • Rearrange tables in the diagram by dragging them all over the space. You can select several tables and drag them to a new location.
  • Auto-arrange tables into a compact view after manual rearrangements: click the Arrange Diagram () in the toolbar or on the context menu (right-click anywhere on the diagram tab).
  • (Available for Custom Diagrams only) - connect tables with a connector: click the Show Palette button () in the upper-left corner of the diagram tab and then, in the Palette panel, click Connection:

    Now click the tables that you want to connect with each other in turn, one by one. To stop the connection line, double-click the last table

  • (Available for Custom Diagrams only) - removes tables and connections: right-click the table or connection and click Delete on the context menu or just click the table or connection and press Delete.

View Adjustment

You can adjust the view of any diagram in the following ways:

  • Enable/disable the diagram grid: Click Toggle Grid () in the toolbar.
  • Modify attributes visibility: Right-click the diagram and, on the context menu, click Show Attributes and then select one of the options:
    • All - all attributes
    • Any keys - primary and foreign keys
    • Primary key - only primary keys
    • None - no attributes
  • Modify attributes presentation: Right-click the diagram and, on the context menu, click View Styles and then select one of the options:
    • Show Icons
    • Show Data Types
    • Show Nullability
    • Show Comments
    • Show Fully qualified names
  • Change the color of the entities/notes: Right-click the header of the entity or comment and then click Set color on the context menu. Then you can select the color and click OK.
  • For elements located in front of/behind others, bring an element to the front or send it to the back: Right-click the element and then click Bring to front / Send to back on the context menu.
  • Zoom the diagram in/out: Click the Zoom In/Zoom Out buttons or choose the scaling value in the dropdown list in the toolbar:

Refresh

To see changes made by others to the database schema, you might need to refresh the diagram: click Refresh Diagram () in the toolbar.

Diagram Notations and Routing types

DBeaver offers a variety of notations and routing types for ER Diagrams, allowing you to customize database structure representations to suit your needs.

Notations

  • IDEF1X (default): Highly recommended for designing relational databases. It places a strong emphasis on detailing entity relationships and constraints. For more information, see IDEF1X Notation.

  • Bachman: A notation that is particularly useful for data processing diagrams and reflects the data structure of the designed system from the data management perspective. For a more detailed understanding, refer to Bachman Notation.

    Note: Bachman notation is available in Enterprise, Ultimate and Team editions only.

  • Crows Foot: This notation is widely used and is particularly intuitive for representing cardinality and relationships between entities. More information is available on Crows Foot Notation.

Routing types

  • Shortest paths (default): Calculate and display the shortest possible lines connecting entities, ensuring a compact and efficient diagram representation.

    Tip: Click on a connection to view detailed relationships.

  • Orthogonal paths: Uses right-angled lines for clear, structured layouts; Showing direct relationships between tables and columns.

    Note: Orthogonal paths are available in Enterprise, Ultimate and Team editions only.

  • Mikami-Tabuchi (Experimental): An experimental routing type that applies an algorithm for pathfinding in the diagram.

Setting Notation and Routing type

To set notation or routing type in an ER Diagram:

  1. Right-click on an empty space within the ER Diagram area.
  2. From the context menu, hover over Notation or Routing for the respective settings.
  3. Select your preferred option from the submenu.

Alternatively, adjust these settings through the ER Diagram toolbar:

  1. Click the Settings button .
  2. In the Advanced section, find the Notation type or Routing type dropdown menu.
  3. Choose your preferred setting.

Notes

You can create notes only in Custom Diagrams. To create a note, click the Show Palette button () in the upper-left corner of the diagram tab. Then, in the Palette panel, click Note and click anywhere in the diagram tab. Now you can double-click the Note box to enter the note text:

Search in Diagram Entities

To search among entities of a diagram, click the Search items button () in the toolbar, then type in the search combination. The entities that contain the search combination are highlighted in the diagram. To remove the filter, click the cross icon next to the search field.

Bindings

Navigation and selection

  • Use ARROWS to navigate between tables.
  • Press SHIFT| + ARROWS to select multiple tables.
  • Press CTRL| + ARROWS to select additional tables using SPACEBAR.
  • Press SPACEBAR to select the current table.

Table Manipulation

  • Press . (period) to change the mode to move/resize tables, then use ARROWS and ENTER| to move/resize tables.

Note: To use this feature on macOS, you may need to enable accessibility permissions for DBeaver. This can be done in System Preferences —> Security & Privacy —> Accessibility.

Focus

  • Press ENTER| to focus on attributes in the table.
  • Press BACKSPACE| to leave the focus.
  • Use |, ?, \ to focus on associations.
  • Press ALT/FN + 1|⌥/FN + 1 to focus on the diagram.
  • Press ALT/FN + 2|⌥/FN + 2 to focus on the palette.
  • Press ALT/FN + 3|⌥/FN + 3 to focus/open the outline.
  • Press ALT/FN + 4|⌥/FN + 4 to focus on the parameter view.

Other Functions

  • Press CTRL + SHIFT + ENTER |⌃ + SHIFT + ↩ to open the selected table diagram.

Diagram Export

You can export (save) a diagram as an image (PNG, GIF, BMP formats) or as a file in GraphML format. To export a diagram, click Save diagram in external format () in the toolbar.

Diagram Printing

To print a diagram, press CTRL+P or click Print Diagram () on the toolbar.

Settings

To modify the diagram settings, click Configuration () on the toolbar.

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