Geodatabase Data Model Diagram

08-29-2011 11:26 AM
Status: Open
New Contributor II
It would be really great to have a way to dynamically create a diagram of a geodatabase data model. Currently we can use tools like GDB XRay, GDB Diagrammer and Visio to create a graphic data model diagram but if any changes need to be made to the geodatabase you have to start all over again. So the idea is to build this functionality into Desktop to enable interactive edits to the geodatabase that would be reflected in the data model diagram.

I usually have to export out the existing schema as an XML workspace document, then edit the schema with XML Notepad. This works for simple changes, like spelling mistakes, or order changes, but not for complicated modifications. We have purchased outside software to help us print our data dictionary, and copy paste in to Visio to get the diagrams organized.

It would be nice if this was built into an ESRI product, instead of purchasing outside software to do it. 


Having the same issue.  What tool did you purchase for printing out the data dictionary? 


Hi Dan,

We are using a program called Enterprise Architect from Sparx Systems.  A company out of Australia. The license level is a professional edition but single use.  I am the only one in our organization that deals with schema changes in our enterprise geodatabases.  It works well, but has a bit of a learning curve.  For a data dictionary, it has a report writer that works well if you tweak the code a bit. (provides too much info about your data)  I still use Visio to diagram the data structure though.


datamodel #gdb tools

With the loss of XRay for use with ArcGIS Pro and the introduction of some of the new data modeling extensions like Utility Network Extension.  The lack of tooling in ArcGIS to at least create/export a reference document of the data model for people outside the GIS/ICT space to validate is quite frustrating. 

Esri have done an excelent job in ArcGIS Pro for updateing schema using the Design dialogs and tools, but exporting the information to an HTML document or Visio would be a fanstatic Add-in to have (something like the old ArcGIS Diagrammer)      

Enterprise Architect from Sparx Systems is an option, but a little hard to justify the costs (of both licensing and ICT support) just to export the data model to a human readable form. ‌