If you guys haven’t heard about or started using MySQL Workbench yet, it’s high time you started exploring it. MySQL Workbench is a visual database design tool that integrates database design, modeling, creation and maintenance into a single, seamless environment for the MySQL database system. Sun Microsystems has recently released the 5.2 Beta version of Workbench. The MySQL Workbench Community Edition is freely available for download under the open source GPL license at dev.mysql.com/workbench. This full-featured tool provides a base framework for data modeling and physical database design.
It’s surprisingly simple, designing a database schema using Workbench. The tool is really intuitive and the Forward Engineer feature allows you to install the database on a server directly from the Workbench drawings. It allows you to create database models from scratch as well as by importing existing databases from SQL or DBDesigner4 models. You can then generate SQL code to CREATE databases, ALTER them, and export in various image formats and PDF/PS.
Apart from using it as a Visual database designing tool, the diagrams could be used for documentation purposes and this tool can be used for version controlling of database as it has got “Synchronize” functionality.
The MySQL Workbench manual can be downloaded here: http://downloads.mysql.com/docs/workbench-en.a4.pdf
Click here to go to the Downloads page: http://dev.mysql.com/downloads/workbench/