CA ERwin

I have been seeing some jobs that want you to have experience with ERwin. I don't think I have used that tool before. Heck. I first started drawing ER diagrams with a generic graphics program like Visio. The last time I used any formal programs for design, it must have been Rational Rose.

CA ERwin is a data modeler. The name stands for "Entity Relationship" and Microsoft "Windows". The tool was created by Logic Works. It allows you to also do requirements analysis. Of course it lets you do database design. ERwin will let you create a custom information system, a transactional database system, or a datamart. There are four main editions of the software:
  1. Community - free, subset of features, max 25 objects
  2. Navigator - read only
  3. Standard - an enterprise edition
  4. Workgroups - collaborative
 ERwin lets you do both logical and physical modeling. Once you have the physical model, ERwin can automatically generate the DDL to create your schema. The physical model supports the following targets:
  • DB2
  • Informix
  • MySQL
  • Oracle
  • SAS
  • Azure
  • SQL Server
  • Sybase
The one targeting Microsoft Azure is its own edition. I tried downloading the community edition. Be warned. The thing takes a long time to install. It first wants to install the Microsoft dot net framework. Then it uses an Installshield wizard to guide you through the options. The default options require 814M of disk space.

Once installed, I found the IDE to be very intuitive. It felt like using Microsoft's Visual Studio, where I feel at home. I started a logical modeling project. Generated a bunch of entities chock full of attributes. Save my file off with an "*.etwin" extension. Later I plan to create a physical model and deploy it to an Oracle database. Oh my.