I do a good amount of work in MySQL so that I need a good database admin tool. I come from a Microsoft Enterprise Manager/Management Studio background so much of this review compares to that as a benchmark.
- Import/Export Data feature rocks. Much easier to use then DTS for simple imports & exports & supports multiple formats (db, dbf, txt, html, xls, wk1, wq1, xml, mdb, ODBC)
- Dump as SQL. Will write out your table to .sql file with the full inserts. Microsoft so needs this.
- Maintain Tables. Easily able to
- Backups. Straight forward step by step.
- Saved Queries. Navicat saves then within the application at the database level not a sql file, this makes finding queries much faster.
- Scheduled Job. Again straight forward step by step
- Manage Users. They make it as simple as MySQL can be (which isn’t that simple sense you have to create a user multiple times to have access from localhost and from anywhere)
- Data Transfers. Their version of DTS, not as robust but gets the job done.
- Query Windows. This is my biggest complaint of Navicat and almost a show stopper for me. Tabbed windows are great BUT having multiple tabs within tabs causes my eye to lose focus of which tab I need. Not good for quick tabbing, I have to think before clicking which slows me down. I much prefer how Management Studio has tabs for queries but shows results at the bottom of that window.
- Query Builder. I do most of my SQL by hand so this doesn’t effect me to much but Navicat’s query builder uses the dreaded Grave `instead of the Quote ‘. So if you use their query builder to get a sql statement started, maintaining it could be a nightmare.
- Designer. Seems clunky and implemented as a second thought. Big improvements here.
Overall Navicat is the most feature rich MySQL tool on the market (I’ve tried ~4 so far). Pricing is at $139, well within reason. Besides a reworking of the query window, Navicat is a finely tuned. 2 TechToolBlog thumbs up.