Evaluate Weigh the pros and cons of technologies, products and projects you are considering.

Tools for design information with SSADM or Barlow methods

I have some questions: 1)What are some powerful tools or software for documentation of design information with...

SSADM or Barlow methods? 2)I want a powerful resource (and sample) for SSADM and Barlow methods.

SSADM is popular in the UK and parts of Europe, but it seems to get a lot less attention in the US. The only "Barlow method" I've ever heard of isn't truly a methodology at all, but something more like a formalized practical guide used by Ed Barlow, a Sybase guru. Unfortunately, I don't use either of them, so I can offer an informed observer's opinion, but not a user's opinion.

In my opinion, the best documentation and data modeling tool on the market today is ErWin. Version 3.5.2 is getting a bit "long in the tooth", but the new version from Computer Associates doesn't seem stable enough to be ready for production use. This package takes a relatively long time to learn, but it is the most powerful package that I've used yet.

A very good second best in the field is Visio Enterprise. I still haven't quite tamed this beast for some of my larger database models, but it appears to have every tool I need. Once I get a chance to spend some time figuring out how to make it behave for large models, it will probably become my tool of choice.

If you are working in a primarily Sybase shop, their Power Designer product works reasonably well. It has a bit too parochial feel for my taste, but that is a matter of taste, not a condemnation of the product. The last version I reviewed had some documented support for, and probably didn't do anything to directly disqualify its use for documenting and managing a data model using the "Barlow Method".

For More Information

This was last published in April 2001

Dig Deeper on Oracle database design and architecture

Have a question for an expert?

Please add a title for your question

Get answers from a TechTarget expert on whatever's puzzling you.

You will be able to add details on the next page.

Start the conversation

Send me notifications when other members comment.

By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy

Please create a username to comment.