Geodatabase Designer alternative for version 10?

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02-29-2012 12:23 PM
New Contributor III
Hi all
I've been using the Geodatabase Designer tool for years to export and save off my GDB schema. It enabled me to save off an independent network schema as well, which came in handy a few times. It looks like this tool is not updated to work with version 10 though. I realize there is a Catalog tool to export XML workspace, but it doesn't seem as slick. Also, you cannot export the network, etc separately and the output is not as easy to read. I'm wondering what others are using to save off their schema when they make changes? Do you just use the built in export tool(s) now or do you have some other alternative to Geodatabase Designer?
Thanks, Gavin
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11 Replies
Esri Contributor
Have you taken a look at the ArcGIS Diagrammer.  There is a new version for 10 which does many of the same fucntions and more.  More information may be found here.
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New Contributor III
Thanks Jon
I was looking at the Diagrammer as well as Xray just today, but haven't had enough time to digest either yet. They both seem to do the trick, but still wondering what others have found to be most useful and more importantly simple. I really don't have a need to do major schema editing, etc.
Thanks, Gavin
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New Contributor
GDB Designer 9.2 works in ArcGIS 10 with some workaround.


  1. Remove any installation of ESRI SDK.

  2. Install GDB Designer 9.2.

  3. Register GDBdesigner.dll using regsvr32. (if working on 64 bit OS)

  4. Go to the ArcGIS/bin folder and launch categories.exe

  5. Go to component 'ESRI GX Dockable window' and click add object

  6. Browse to the 'GDBdesigner.dll' and add.

  7. This should now bring and object 'GDBdesigner2.OutputWindowDockable'.

  8. Now go to Arc Catalog and add the tool. All should work fine now. Reinstall the SDK uninstalled at step 1.

DKA
New Contributor
Hi DKA,

thanks you for your comment, but I've a problem.
I've followed all your tips, but after ading the GDBDesginer.dll in category.exe, ArcCatalog don't start, I've the typicall error message of: "critical problem, ArcCatalog have to shut down".
I work on Windows 7 OS....
What's the reason of this problem How can I soluce it?

Best regards,
Bertrand

EDIT:
If  I don't register GDBDesginer.dll (regsvr32) > It starts
If I register the DLL, it don't
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Esri Contributor
Step 8 of DKA's great tip maybe should be expanded to say:

Step 8

  • In Customize Mode

  • On the Toolbars tab

  • Click  �??Add from File�?�

  • Navigate to GDBdesigner.dll

  • Now Geodatabase Designer will be available on the list of Toolbars

Once this is done - the tools work (even on Windows 7 64 bit) !!
This has been a lifesaver - particularly with the Geometric Network Connectivity Rules Editor
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New Contributor
Guys thanks for the helpful posts.

Two quick clarifications:

- Re Step 1 (Uninstall the ESRI SDK), in my experience this is not necessary (I presume this refers to the .NET ArcObjects SDK)
- Re Step 3 (Register GDBdesigner.dll), this *is* necessary for 32 bit (and I presume also 64 bit).  There is a script installed for this: Geodatabase Designer 2\BIN\_REGISTER.BAT.  Need to run as admin of course.
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New Contributor III
Thanks for the info.  This is very helpful.  Although for me it was even easier...


  1. Install GeodatabseDesigner

  2. Add GDBdesigner.dll to ESRI GX Dockable Windows in categories.exe

  3. Add GDBdesigner.dll to customize toolbars in ArcCatalog

I've done this on PCs with and without the SDKs installed.  The installer itself should have run the regsvr32.  I didn't need to do that step.

I had need of this in Arc10 before this solution was posted.  So at that time I took the longer approach and actually converted the VB code to C#.NET and compiled for Arc10 natively.  I only did the network import/export parts, not all of Geodatabase Designer.
New Contributor
I am working with an Oracle DBA to copy/paste all our production data to a new Oracle-SDE database with SDO_GEOMETRY and ArcSDE 10 and we are trying to use the Geodatabase Designer 2, added to an ArcCatalog 10 client, to do this. In the past, working with ArcSDE 9 and v.9 client this has worked. But now it doesn't. We have followed the recommendations in replies 4,6,and 7. Butat the very start of the process, trying to copy the first dataset which is our GISADM.200 Annual_2004_Roll, we are getting this error:
    Failed to paste GISADM.Annual_2004_Roll
    Underlying DBMS error [ORA-0001:unique constraint (SDE.R2_SDE_ROWID_UK) violated][SDE_GDB_Items]
    The index passed was not within the valid range
    The index passed was not within the valid range
    ....

Does anyone have an idea what is causing this?

Doug Olcott, GIS Software Engineer
Santa Clara County ISD
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MVP Regular Contributor
I am working with an Oracle DBA to copy/paste all our production data to a new Oracle-SDE database with SDO_GEOMETRY and ArcSDE 10 and we are trying to use the Geodatabase Designer 2, added to an ArcCatalog 10 client, to do this. In the past, working with ArcSDE 9 and v.9 client this has worked. But now it doesn't. We have followed the recommendations in replies 4,6,and 7. Butat the very start of the process, trying to copy the first dataset which is our GISADM.200 Annual_2004_Roll, we are getting this error:
    Failed to paste GISADM.Annual_2004_Roll
    Underlying DBMS error [ORA-0001:unique constraint (SDE.R2_SDE_ROWID_UK) violated][SDE_GDB_Items]
    The index passed was not within the valid range
    The index passed was not within the valid range
    ....

Does anyone have an idea what is causing this?

Doug Olcott, GIS Software Engineer
Santa Clara County ISD


There have been some major changes to the ArcSDE Repository at 10.x, especially a consolidation of the Geodatabase System Tables (down from dozens of normal tables at 9.x, to a few XML based ones at 10.x). Since I see the SDE_GDB_Items mentioned, it may have to do with that change. See this Help page for information about the changes.

I really recommend you to start looking at 10.x specific tools for vital work on your geodatabases, instead of trying to run unsupported and maybe outdated tools.
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