Best Free GUI Tools for MySQL for live Environments

Working on a relational database using only command line tools to writing queries can be hard, luckily we found the best Free GUI tools for your mysql work. Most uses of MySQL for Web development allow you to get around a lot of back end requirements with the use of PHP and other tools that work the database without having to do more than set up. However, as the use of SQL for Web development has increased, and the complexities, so has the availability of tools to manage your SQL database. Here are some of the best tools for working with your MySQL database.


MY SQL first choice - Workbench

Manufactured by Sun Systems/Oracle, this visual database design tool integrates SQL development, administration, design, creation, and maintenance. All mentioned features are available inside the graphical environment. Workbench is a derivative of DBDesigner 4 originally published by as the GUI Tools Bundle.

License: GPL License
Supported platforms: Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X and Linux

The current version of MySQL Workbench is 6.3; earlier versions are available back to 5.0, the first version after the change from fabFORCE.


Sequel Pro

Sequel Pro

Created by The Sequel Project, Sequel Pro is a free open-source application that succeeded CocoaMySQL. As it is a Cocoa based project, Sequel Pro is available for Mac only for OS X. Sequel Pro allows you to manage MySQL databases either locally or through a remote connection. Databases can be added and deleted, as well as table management, fields and indexes. You can add, edit, and remove rows, perform custom queries, and dump everything from tables to entire databases.

Sequel Pro is compatible with MySQL 3.x, 4, and 5, and is extensible to multiple language packs including Japanese, French, German, Swedish, and Russian.

License: GNU GPL 2.0
Supported platforms: Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard or newer



Heidi SQL interface

Written by Ansgar Becker, a German programmer, HeidiSQL is an open source client for MySQL. After authenticating into your MySQL database through either a local or remote connection, users can manage their database during the session. While its feature set is not as robust as other clients, it is sufficient for most common tasks and some advanced database, table, and record operations. It is still in development and features continue to be added. A Java version exists for compatibility with any system, but the project was abandoned in 2010 so Linux users would be best served to use Wine to run the Windows version.

License: GNU General Public License
Supported platforms: Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, 10 (can be run on any Linux with Wine)



PHP My Admin SQL interface for Cpanel on Linux

Perhaps best known as a cPanel app, phpMyAdmin by the phpMyAdmin Project is a free software tool to handle Internet administration only of MySQL databases. PhpMyAdmin allows for a wide range of operations, including database management, as well as table, field, relation, index, user, and permission changes. phpMyAdmin also supports direct execution of SQL statements.

PhpMyAdmin is the brainchild of Tobias Ratschiller, founder of software company Maguma, and was started in 1998 making it one of the oldest PHP projects. He abandoned it in 2000 and afterwards it became a community-supported project due to the fact that it had become one of the most powerful and popular PHP applications and MySQL administration tools. It was registered at SourceForge in 2001 where it has received community support ever since.

License: GNU General Public License, version 2
Supported platforms: Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X and Linux, PHP 4 – 5 and MySQL 3 – 5


dbForge Studio Express

DB Forge Studio Application Sample

From Devart, dbForge is not a completely free application, but there are three tiers: Express, Standard, and Professional. For non-commercial use, Express is a free application that provides basic functionality for working with MySQL. Express users can edit schema objects, user accounts, SQL scripts, and queries.

License: Commercial and non-commercial licenses available.
Supported Platforms: Windows XP/7/8/8.1/10


DBTools Manager


From DBTools, DBTools Manager Standard Edition is designed for personal use. It has a minimum set of features that make it ideal for new database users to perform management tasks. You can get this under a standard freeware license from their website. Keep in mind that for commercial use, you must purchase a license, but for learning to manage a MySQL database, it is a good and easy GUI toolkit for beginners and those managing a personal or non-commercial enterprise.

License: Standard Edition is licensed under standard freeware conditions.  The enterprise version is licensed per unit sold.
Supported platforms: Windows 2000, XP, Vista, 7
*Both include Support for MySQL 3, 4 and 5.*

MyDB Studio


Finally, from H2LSoft comes MyDB Studio. It is a complete and free set of GUI tools for MySQL Server admin. It allows for easy create, edit, and drop database objects. In addition, you can also easily synchronize your database and import and export data with just mouse clicks. Database administrators can use it as well for migration, backup, and restore. Access is local or remotely through a Secure Shell (SSH) tunnel for connecting even in cases where your host doesn’t allow remote access. You can manage user and privilege management and run scripts through the tunnel as well.

License: freeware
Supported platforms: Windows, XP, Vista, 7, 8, 10


MySQL has a good support base, and therefore there are a lot of semi-commercial as well as free community supported applications. Of these, phpMyAdmin is probably the most venerable and well known, but even an application with a minimum set of features such as DBTools Manager makes database creation and management easier. Graphical user interfaces such as these make database administration straightforward, especially for the beginner or for the non-DBA user who needs to administer a database for PHP or other features.

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