Oracle SQL Developer vs dbForge Studio for Oracle


Oracle SQL Developer is an Integrated Development Environment (IDE). It has been used around the world for many years, but over time other IDEs have emerged. They came with more features, amenities, and improvements, and made database development, administration, and SQL coding much less painful.

dbForge Studio for Oracle is one of those IDEs. It is characterized by a simple and intuitive interface, practicality in managing databases and schemas, ease of export and import (expdp And ipdp) schema, agility in writing PL/SQL, and many other features.

Oracle SQL Developer and dbForge Studio for Oracle share some similar features, but there are also big differences. For example, Oracle SQL Developer does not require installation – it can be downloaded and run. dbForge for Oracle requires installation, but is very practical, fast and intuitive. dbForge Studio for Oracle has advantages that make it the best choice in many cases, whatever your purpose – from database administration to SQL development.

Let’s get acquainted with the essential differences.

Writing and Running SQL Queries

In both the IDEs, we can set the desired schema using the command alter session set current_schema = SCHEMA_NAME,

In Oracle SQL Developer, when we define a schema this way and start writing a query, the IDE will not bring us suggestions of information based specifically on that specific schema. Nor will it provide the possibility to use the sign in writing. The thing is that it doesn’t understand that the schema has already been defined. As a result, we have to code everything manually.

In dbForge Studio for Oracle, there are a range of options and opportunities for writing queries, with a single command executed to define the schema. For example, when we insert a table during query writing, the IDE automatically suggests relevant hints. It can prompt us to use a simple join or to choose from all possible join options (and it provides those options). To see all schemas, select show all items in the top corner.


query Builder

Query builder allows us to build queries visually without the need to write them manually. Both IDEs have this option.

To use it, select all desired tables (multiple tables) in the left menu and drag them to the area used by the Query Builder (Open in New Query). However, Oracle SQL Developer requires us to create the relationships between the tables and the required columns for each table, and then generate the SQL script. dbForge Studio for Oracle automatically creates these relationships between the selected tables. You only need to define the desired fields in each table in order to create the script.

See the illustration below with three tables. Two of them are correlated, and the third is not.

query Builder

object explorer

To locate the schema objects in SQL Developer, right-click a table on the left. You can rename, replace, drop, and perform other actions on objects. This also applies to columns and indexes. Furthermore, by clicking the left button on a table, you launch a new window with tabs that contain various information related to the table (Columns, Data, Models, Constraints, Grants, Indexes, etc.). And you can modify these tabs.

dbForge Studio for Oracle offers the same options as SQL Developer plus a lot of additional options. For example, it allows you to create a relationship diagram. Go to the menu on the left and choose Create Diagram from Schema Table. Select all required tables, right-click and select send to > database diagram, After that, Studio will display a screen allowing us to inspect all the relationships, primary keys (each arrow in the diagram corresponds to a primary key), foreign keys, table fields, data types, and much more data.

object explorer

code standard

In SQL Developer, the type of script formatting includes the SQL standard. When entering or writing a query, you can format it according to the SQL standard – ensure correct indentation, capitalization, and so on. To do this, press CTRL+F7 and select the option to edit a query. Or, go to the top menu, click Tools > Preferences > Code Editor > Format > Advanced Format. There you can choose several options, such as alignment, spaces for indentation, line breakers, etc.

In dbForge Studio for Oracle, you can easily format queries. Press CTRL + K + D or click on Tools > Options > Text Editor > Formatting > Profile > Edit/New Profile. This section provides various formatting options. For example, you can automatically format a specific command, such as a SELECT command. Select it from the menu on the left and configure the formatting style for it by enabling and disabling the options. The preview window on the right helps you get an idea of ​​how the look suits your preferences.

code standard

code snippets

Code snippets are reusable templates that contain the basic or general structure of an SQL statement or PL-SQL block.

To access this functionality in SQL Developer, go to Top Menu > Tools > Preferences > Code Editor. From here you can choose Advanced Format. That section allows you to change the default query format according to your needs or personal or business preferences. Another option of choice is Code Templates where it is possible to change, add or delete code templates. In SQL Developer, code template is one Identification Used to “call” the template when writing SQL. For example, if an id is called of these, type “Ins” in the worksheet and select the template that appears. The script corresponding to that template will appear in the worksheet for you to use.

In dbForge Studio for Oracle, press CTRL+W+T to display code snippets Menu on the right. The last icon in this menu refers to snippet manager Where you can customize, add and remove SQL templates. Let’s say you want to create a template for a specific DML statement. then press snippet manager > SQL syntax, and so forth dml statement folder.

To use an existing template in dbForge Studio for Oracle, simply drag the block name into the “.sql” script window, and it will appear on the screen.

code snippet

code debugging

Debugging is essential for any SQL developer or database administrator because it helps identify potential execution problems with SQL statements or PL-SQL blocks.

In SQL Developer, to debug, for example, a procedure, you need to select the procedure on the left, right-click on it, select compile for debuginsert the break points, run, enter the parameter values ​​for that procedure (if necessary), and click OK. After that, it is possible to see the value of the field in the SQL text by hovering the mouse over the object.

dbForge Studio for Oracle allows you to debug simple processes. Simply select the desired process, right-click on it, and choose Compile > Compile for Debugging > Select the desired object name > Compile. Once this is done, choose break point, run and enter parameter values. variables can be added to watch list (see bottom of menu). The values ​​are changed in real time at each step (right-click on the desired object > Add Watch).

export and import

It is often necessary to update one or more schemas in a test or staging environment to validate code changes, applications, etc. This operation suggests using the export and import functions.

SQL Developer allows you to complete the export option. Go to Top Menu > Database Export. A new Export Wizard window will open for you to insert, select, or deselect the desired options (objects, data, etc.).

With dbForge Studio for Oracle, it is possible to create a schema script by right-clicking on the desired database > Export and Import > Schema Export. Then you should select or modify the required information. In addition, it is possible to save export schema script in project format (save project) or command line format (save command line), and later use the SQL script in the .bat file.

the image below shows Schema Export Wizard, But Common tab, we select database information, schema, etc. and on export material tab, we can check the options to be included in the export.

export Import

invalid objects

SQL Developer does not have a facilitator for interacting with invalid objects in Oracle Database. In dbForge Studio for Oracle, we can use invalid object manager, which is a tool that makes it very easy to compile invalid objects. Right-click the database in question and select Invalidate Object Manager. then choose action required or essential items> Compilation, status And Result Each compilation will follow. finally you can click analyze again To redo the validation and check if any items are invalid.

The image below shows that there are no invalid objects in the analyzed environment, only valid objects.

invalid objects

schema/data comparison

A powerful and very useful tool, dbForge Studio for Oracle allows us to quickly and securely compare schemas and data in different environments.

To access this functionality, go to Top Menu > Compare , new schema compare, Then select the source database and destination for comparison. It checks these databases over a connection made in dbForge Studio for Oracle. then select Source And Targetand all schema will be shown in schema mapping. option not to show “system schema” ,hide system schema) is already enabled by default.


First, it displays what is or is not already different between schemas. Then we select the desired schema Source And DestinationClick compareAnd the tool does all the necessary comparisons.

new plan

If differences are detected, it generates the DDL of the table.


And we can execute it manually or automatically directly in the synchronization tool.

synchronization tool

For dbForger Studio for Oracle in particular, the schema/data comparison helps DBAs verify, for example, how updated the test environment is and if the application team can use it (they should be as close as possible to production environment is required). This activity is done almost daily, so to avoid updating the entire environment, I use schema/data comparison tools and update only the desired objects.


In short, dbForge Studio for Oracle is often superior in both functionality and usability. After getting familiar with dbForge for Oracle, I use it constantly in all possible activities. For those looking for agility in PL/SQL writing, practicality and security in DBA activities, DBForge Studio for Oracle is for you!


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