I'm looking for an open source alternative to SQLMaestro for PostgreSQL because it has visual database designer which is not avaliable in pgAdmin which makes database design so easy.

PS I'm not sure if this is illegal here but I've to ask about it because google didn't help me to find the alternative.


2 Answers 2


I found awesome tools in PostgreSQL wiki thank for your help guys.

The summary:

  • PGmodeler: If we mixed pgAdmin with PGmodeler we'll get full alternative to SQLMaestro for PostgreSQL but we'll miss one thing which is "Reverse Engineering" to the database because PGmodeler works in one direction.
    As of 2017, importing existing schema / layout (aka. "Reverse Engineering") is possible with PGmodeler!

  • Power Architect: Supports many database engines but its designer has problem with database syncing "Forward Engineer" in case the developer changed the design of the scheme by another tool (ex. pgAdmin) in addition to slow performance in case of designing big schemes because it uses Java/Swing and finally, the user guide is totally commercial for 99$... damn :(

  • Open System Architect: Supports many database engines but it seems dead project although it built by Qt (latest commit was in 2010) I couldn't connect to any database because it failed to find unixODBC path although I already installed it in my Mint Linux!

  • TOra is also worth noting: TOra - An Oracle Toolkit for DBA's and developers. PostgreSQL support is officially not complete - seems to work reasonably well with older psql versions (<= 9.4), while having a segfault now and then. Special: All SQL queries (used to fill the GUI with data) may be edited.

I wish this will be helpful to you.

UPDATE: As of 2017, importing existing schema / layout (aka. "Reverse Engineering") is possible with PGmodeler!

  • 2
    PowerArchitect seems to be a dead project as well. The last commit is from August 2011. If you are willing to pay a little bit I can recommend DbSchema (dbschema.com). I'm not in any way related to them. I just like the tool. Btw: it seems OpenSystemArchitect is not really dead: codebydesign.com/Project13
    – user1822
    Feb 14, 2013 at 8:06
  • Dude DbSchema is commercial project... I asked for just open source alternative!!!
    – mbnoimi
    Feb 15, 2013 at 16:31
  • 1
    That's why I said "if you want to pay a bit". It's really not that expensive and way better than the open source alternatives. If you are serious about modelling you should consider paying for such a tool.
    – user1822
    Feb 15, 2013 at 17:11

I've used DBDesigner before, and there exists a fork which supports PostgreSQL. There's also Druid, but I've never used that one. I've heard the interface is somewhat wonky.

Honestly, when I've had the need for this functionality for a small project in the past, I will often roughly design it in MySQL Workbench and then write the table definitions out elsewhere. This allows you to actually develop the DB with the advantage of the UI at least.

However, my experience with these type of tools is that the cost is generally worth it to use a tool you enjoy working with and that can save you time. There are few things more frustrating than banging on a DB when you can't tell what's wrong, and the right tools are immensely helpful. If you're a student, then I can understand just wanting a free CASE/ERD/UML program, but if you're a developer a good DB tool is almost always a wise investment.

  • DB Designer Fork seems interesting but as you can see it's dead project since it's written by Kylix.. latest release was at 2010 for Windows only while I'm Linux developer!
    – mbnoimi
    Feb 12, 2013 at 0:47
  • Designing Databases by MySQL Workbench isn't an option for me specially I'm using PostgreSQL! but MySQL Workbench is similar to pgAdmin so visual designer (modeler) is unavailable
    – mbnoimi
    Feb 12, 2013 at 0:50
  • @mbnoimi The point about MySQL Workbench is that you can design the database overall and then create it in PG. It depends on what you want in a designer. If you want something that is completely visual, and will write all the SQL for you, and works on Linux, and supports PostgreSQL, and is currently developed, and is easy to use, and is free... well, you're asking for a lot. You'll have to compromise somewhere.
    – Bacon Bits
    Feb 12, 2013 at 2:29
  • I'm not asking for a lot I already using commercial product, all what I'm looking for now is the open source alternative and fortunately I found 3 alternatives "Open System Architect", "Power*Architect" and "PGmodeler"
    – mbnoimi
    Feb 12, 2013 at 2:36
  • @mbnoimi: you have three alternatives, care to explain why none of them works for you?
    – user1822
    Feb 12, 2013 at 7:29

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