Re: SQL2000 Data Dictionary

Subject: Re: SQL2000 Data Dictionary
From: Andrew Plato <gilliankitty -at- yahoo -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 8 May 2003 06:59:07 -0700 (PDT)

"John Posada" <> wrote ...
> Hi, guys...I've been documenting our SQL system and I understand that there
> is something called a "Data Dictionary".
> Now, from my research, I think I've figured out most of the information
> elements that belong IN the dictionary (table name, columns name, data
> types, length, PK/FK, allowed values, etc.) , but what I cannot figure out
> is if it has a formal design. I've searched on this on the web and come up
> with several resources. However, they all seem to present data in any format
> they choose.
> I'm thinking that a data dictionary is similar to an API document; they're
> kinda standard. Is this accurate? Do I understand what a DD is? Am I so
> stupid that I should be ground up into hot dogs?

Probably. A data dictionary has no formal design I've ever seen. I used to do
them as big tables. The only other column you would want to add is "null?" to
indicate if the column can be null or not. Also, you'll want a copy of the ERD
in the dictionary. They are usually sorted by table in the DB, not as a huge
column mass.

I used to doc data dictionaries all the time. SQL 2000 is easy, it will
actually give you a nice export of the entire database. Just reformat that and
fill in the rest. I think SQL Server 2000 also has a feature that will doc the
database for you. I don't remember. You'd need admin rights to the database to
access that feature, which the DBA might not want to give you.

Andrew Plato

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