10 great Alternatives to phpMyAdmin

Ahmed October 10, 2009 88

Most people in the web development world are under the impression that phpMyAdmin is the only MySQLclient out there for websites. Going a step further, some users are aware of alternative however assume that phpMyAdmin is the best. Now, I agree that phpMyAdmin is one of the best out there and is is very user friendly. I myself also used phpMyAdmin much until recently… I got introduced to another program which within an hour became my favourite and also this led me to research others out there. Thus, this post!

10 great Alternatives to phpMyAdmin

Adminer (formerly phpMinAdmin) A full-featured MySQL management tool written in PHP. Does more or less everything phpMyAdmin however consist of a single file only that is ready to upload to your servers and connect to the DB. image Navicat This, in my opinion, is the best MySQL client out there. It does everything you want from a very user friendly interface. However, it doesn’t come free. There is a small price tag to it but is well worth it! image Sequel Pro One for the Mac users. image SQLWave image SQLyog image BlueSQL Free web based DB management tool. image SQL Buddy image DBDesigner 4 image SQLGate image HeidiSQL image


Navicat and Adminer are probably the only other MySQL Clients you need in addition to phpMyAdmin. The rest? I’ll leave them to you to discover which is best suited to you.


  1. kOoLiNuS October 18, 2009 at 11:12 - Reply

    Uhm … DBdesigner is like … dead …. AFAIK, even if it was a wonderful tool for DBMS creation, engenerring …

    • Kieran January 4, 2010 at 06:28 - Reply

      DBDesigner has become MySQL workbench.

      • Ahmed January 8, 2010 at 17:27 - Reply

        Nice one!

  2. ropley October 18, 2009 at 11:30 - Reply

    ‘Small’ price tage for Navicat? $179 seems to be the lowest, non-commercial license fee. Small?

    • Ahmed October 18, 2009 at 11:56 - Reply

      Hey, Thanks for the comment. $179, I would say is small as compared to most other tools and programs you would normally pay for such as the Adobe Suite etc.

      Also, Navicat is so well in functions and features that if you were developing large websites on a daily basis, you would definitely be willing to pay more after using it!

      However, I do agree that, that $179 is out of the budget of many.

      • Cyril A. Karpenko November 7, 2009 at 15:09 - Reply

        The price of Abode Suite is small too if we wil compare it with price of Axapta ;-)

      • Matt June 5, 2011 at 13:13 - Reply

        Navicat is good, I give it that. But first: it’s not an alternative for PHPMyAdmin since it’s not a server-side tool, secondly it has really bad import processing engine, plus it’s buggy as hell.

        For general database manipulations PHPMyAdmin is enough, but for deployment nothing beats usefulness of mysqldump app which is supplied with MySQL package.

        I found out that importing standard SQL scripts in Navicat can take ages.

        You wouldn’t settle for a second-hand tools, would you? Especially when it comes to making sure your projects are not screwed because Navicat crashed, like it does often.

  3. Matt October 19, 2009 at 09:15 - Reply

    Navicat is really a great tool, although $179 is a usual price tag of the very complex and advanced hard drive management and back up tools like Acronis Disk Director or Image Home. Comparing to these tools Navicat is a really small smelly fish.

    • Ahmed October 19, 2009 at 15:36 - Reply

      Good call!!

      Thanks for the comment!

    • Chris H October 27, 2009 at 09:37 - Reply

      Navicat is a small smelly fish in a fragranced ocean.

      • Ahmed October 27, 2009 at 11:09 - Reply

        Hahah! Navicat is definitely different!

    • EllisGL November 10, 2009 at 21:02 - Reply

      SQLYog is $79 / Personal Use & $99 / Commercial Use for a single license.

      • Ahmed November 11, 2009 at 09:01 - Reply

        Doesn’t seem too bad! If it’s need then it’s a small price!!

  4. Johnathan Hebert October 19, 2009 at 18:27 - Reply


    Take a look at our free open-source alternative to phpMyAdmin –
    MonoQL — http://demo.monoql.com

    It’s new, but very functional… your feedback would be appreciated!

    • Ahmed October 21, 2009 at 08:58 - Reply

      Hi Jonathan,

      I’ve looked at MonoQl. Seems quite good and lots of potential for growth. Better than many out there.

      I’ll keep an eye on this.

    • Eric nevertells February 9, 2011 at 06:08 - Reply

      If you can’t download it and run it on your own server, and it is not open source, then it seems to me like someone trying to steal data. I’m not trying that!

  5. wackonerd November 3, 2009 at 12:22 - Reply

    I have used DB Tools (PC) for the last few years, http://www.dbtools.com.br/EN/ there is a free version as well a paid version, the free one works great. I use Sequel Pro on my mac but like DB Tools much better

    • Ahmed November 4, 2009 at 08:59 - Reply

      Great tool!! I’ll have to add this to the list! Thanks for the comment!

  6. fest November 7, 2009 at 12:03 - Reply

    Well, last time I checked, HeidiSQL wasn’t working for me- it was all buggy, it’s session management was PITA and it had no “quick connect” option- so I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone who does serious development.

  7. Dominik November 7, 2009 at 12:07 - Reply

    I have used HeidiSQL for dome time, but finally ended up with SQLyog, which is quite good and – if you work with your data a lot – much faster than phpMyAdmin.

    However none of the tools I tried comes close to the tools available for Microsoft’s SQL-Server. Hey, Open Source Community? Any Volunteers? :)

    • Ahmed November 8, 2009 at 11:40 - Reply


    • Justin Noel November 11, 2009 at 03:01 - Reply

      SQLYog is simply the best MySQL GUI. I’ve used everything out there and none come close to it.

      Unfortunately, it is not available on a Mac. So, I live with SQLYog running in Parallels. It is really that good that I’m willing to live with Windows just to use it.

      • Ahmed November 11, 2009 at 09:02 - Reply

        You make it sound better than Navicat! Impossible!!!

  8. Erol November 7, 2009 at 12:27 - Reply

    We cant forget Toad – http://www.quest.com/toad-for-mysql/

    • Ahmed November 8, 2009 at 11:41 - Reply


  9. Herbert November 7, 2009 at 12:49 - Reply

    I think you missed these from MySQL:

    MySQL Query Browser
    MySQL Administrator

    The first one is very good (derived from DBDesigner).

    • Ahmed November 8, 2009 at 11:42 - Reply

      I’ll have to check these out! Thanks for the list.

    • Mike August 30, 2011 at 03:43 - Reply

      I don’t know if you’re still keeping track of these comments, but I’d stear clear of the MySql GUI apps. They used to be good, but in the last 18 months have become unusable. I don’t know how Oracle managed to mess up such useful apps so badly.

      Importing and Exporting anything (which is just executing mysql commands) crashes 80% of the time when you get a slightly large database.

  10. CSky November 7, 2009 at 12:57 - Reply

    I used HeidiSQL for a long time, and I remember it working really well.

    Navicat is great, but it’s quite advanced, and the price is worth it if you’re in need of enterprise level DB tools.

    MySQL’s own tools are also pretty good, and I’m not sure why they weren’t included on this list.

  11. forsooth November 7, 2009 at 13:01 - Reply

    I have used Webyog for quite some time and it is quite good. It continues to improve steadily. The developers are also fast to respond to any discovered bugs and the user forum is very active.

    I have not tried Navicat due to the price differential, BUT I note that Navicat has a report engine with it (enterprise version) which is very helpful…Better than pulling out the Crystal Report guns when a small report is required.

    In fact, I wish somebody would try to publish a report engine for MySQL that is simple, succinct, functional, and affordable (e.g., in the $75-120 range).

    Thanks for your list. There are a few on here I didn’t know about and want to check out!

  12. Duodraco November 7, 2009 at 13:17 - Reply

    So, I’m using Mysql GUI Tools (Query Browser, Administrator) and Mysql Workbench(5.2alpha)). Are great tools, and can be dowloaded from here:

    • Ahmed November 8, 2009 at 11:46 - Reply

      Nice! Thanks for the links!

  13. Roger Loreman November 7, 2009 at 13:59 - Reply

    You left out MYSQL’s Admin freebie, a bit clumsy, but gets the job done.

    • Ahmed November 8, 2009 at 11:47 - Reply

      My apologies. Will need to add these to the list!

  14. Kumarasamy November 7, 2009 at 16:22 - Reply

    What happened to Toad For MySQL????

  15. Kuma November 7, 2009 at 21:24 - Reply

    Tinymy is a great, limeweight alternative too


  16. LP November 9, 2009 at 10:51 - Reply

    I use SQLYog, because it has unique feature of tunneling, among other great things. You can upload one PHP tunneling script, and work with remote server, with cloaked mysql, just like with your local mysql installation. You can also use SSH tunneling. Unfortunately free community version of SQLYog lacks this feature, however it was so useful many times it’s worth buying.

    • Ahmed November 11, 2009 at 09:00 - Reply


  17. Stefan Sturm November 11, 2009 at 08:46 - Reply


    I like this Tools:
    DBVisualizer: http://www.minq.se/products/dbvis/

    and for DB Design:
    dbwrench http://www.dbwrench.com/


  18. Matt November 11, 2009 at 14:57 - Reply

    Don’t forget MySQL query browser.

    • Ahmed November 11, 2009 at 17:52 - Reply

      Good Call!!

  19. Keloran November 11, 2009 at 16:29 - Reply

    Querious is a better alternative to Sequel Pro, although Querious isnt free

  20. Prads January 4, 2010 at 14:39 - Reply

    I have been using the community edition (free version) of SQLyog for the past 4 years and am very satisfied with it. I might be getting the pro version soon becasue I love it! :)

    • Ahmed January 8, 2010 at 17:28 - Reply

      Hmm.., Ill definitely need to take a look! Thanks

  21. eduardo January 14, 2010 at 21:30 - Reply

    The best desktop app for free is mysqlfront

    • Ahmed January 15, 2010 at 21:36 - Reply

      Ah, not heard of this one. Will need to give it a try!

  22. zeaks April 26, 2010 at 10:15 - Reply

    Thanks for the post, I’ve been having trouble getting phpmyadmin to work with windows 7, kept loading a blank page even after following instructions for a fix, sqlbuddy seems to work great for me though.

    • Ahmed April 26, 2010 at 17:37 - Reply

      It could be a server issue? Have you tries in Windows XP?

  23. wholesale pearl May 29, 2010 at 10:18 - Reply

    Nice post. I will bookmark it.

  24. strony internetowe June 2, 2010 at 23:06 - Reply

    Nice and interesting article. I interested in this. Thx for it.

  25. imroz web design uk September 28, 2010 at 08:17 - Reply

    another wonderful tutorial, it’s easy to follow.

  26. Dareen October 12, 2010 at 12:30 - Reply

    good post. Keep up the good work

    • Ahmed November 14, 2010 at 19:58 - Reply


  27. podajalniki brisač November 11, 2010 at 14:28 - Reply

    Thanks for this awesome list. I am just tired of phpmyadmin (very heavy) so this is exactly what i was looking for :)

  28. zloster November 29, 2010 at 23:39 - Reply

    Great list, but you should definitely mention http://www.dbninja.com/
    I use it for all my projects and think it’s amazing.

    • Ahmed December 2, 2010 at 10:28 - Reply

      Nice one! Looks good thanks

  29. Lorna January 4, 2011 at 07:21 - Reply

    Thanks to your list, I just tried Adminer — what a lifesaver that thing is! Surprisingly useful for a 1-page PHP file!

    • Ahmed January 12, 2011 at 19:07 - Reply


  30. Umair Jabbar January 14, 2011 at 08:21 - Reply

    Hello Ahmed,
    You should also see MyWebSql. at http://http://mywebsql.net

  31. RozaniGhani January 17, 2011 at 12:36 - Reply

    Navicat is the best tool for editing mysql but Navicat is the worst when it comes to connection.

  32. web design manchester February 1, 2011 at 12:31 - Reply

    I keep checking the website for new tuts but this one has been very interesting and knowledge full . GREAT guys keep it up

  33. creative web design February 3, 2011 at 04:07 - Reply

    Very informative, thanks for the post.

  34. pat March 22, 2011 at 20:16 - Reply

    Thanks for the heads up on the Mac Sequel Pro – it’s made my programming a hell of a lot easier.

    Web five.

  35. arif March 30, 2011 at 20:04 - Reply


    i have this interesting classfied-advertising-website project near completion but i have never before developed and run a website. anyone with experience please advise/comment on:

    1. best mysql compatible engine to deal with a large db -100k+ record with a) full-text facility & record-level locking + good security and integrity when handling 100-25 simiultaneous users – any users of maraidb?

    2. i have little export/import experience of phpMyadmin – but it seems to allow import of of only very small databases. what’s the best package mentioned here that can deal with large database import and export?

    3. any feature that helps to quickly and remotely export/import and save the database without much disruption to the service/site.


  36. Andrei Bintintan July 25, 2011 at 12:30 - Reply

    A future alternative to phpmyadmin:

    This is a project I work on from some time:


    Take a look,

  37. nobull July 28, 2011 at 00:53 - Reply

    Funny thing is HEIDI is listed last yet it is probably the best of them all. Why ?

    It’s FREE…
    It’s Fast
    It’s easy to use
    It works on windows and linux (thru wine)
    It’s lightweight (even has a protable version)
    It has all the features that PhpMyAdmin has and more.
    It is under active development.
    and did I mention it’s FREE….

  38. Kumar August 17, 2011 at 05:20 - Reply

    Recently launched macsequel (http://www.macsequel.com) seems to be a good alternative if you are using oracle

    • Ahmed August 17, 2011 at 12:37 - Reply

      Nice, good find

  39. dbfacephp May 7, 2012 at 01:27 - Reply

    Hi, Ahmed,
    Please take a look DbFacePHP for MySQL

    Site: http://www.dbfacephp.com
    Demo : http://www.dbfacephp.com/mockup/index.php

  40. Johnson July 24, 2012 at 07:18 - Reply

    SIDU my fav: sidu.sf.net

  41. Wanderson Siqueira September 25, 2012 at 02:19 - Reply

    Hi Ahmed,

    Nice post, thanks!
    But, you also should consider the best tool.
    mySQL Workbench.

    Greetings from Brazil!

  42. Hibou57 September 30, 2012 at 10:34 - Reply

    The link about BlueSQL, seems now invalid, it leads to a parked domain.

  43. Lightweight version October 1, 2012 at 02:24 - Reply

    Hey Ahmed,

    My team has created a lightweight version of phpmyadmin

    the link is http://mysurf5.netau.net.


  44. that is ME November 11, 2012 at 16:07 - Reply

    is it Me stupid or WHAT

    – I can understand WAMP XAMPP, but I never understand phpmyadmin in MYSQL
    everything look so complicated, seem to be Application Express of Oracle to me
    got everything, but as long as you know how to avoid the PIT (not to click nor those checkbox mean nothing to us)

    just start to try NAVICAT
    simple interface — got data
    you could also go to design view

    and it give you 30days, enough to complete a project

    so this is good, phymyadmin in BAD

  45. projeksiyon lambası November 15, 2012 at 08:55 - Reply

    phpmyadmin is great solution for linux servers. i use it my all sites.

  46. Sheratan December 12, 2012 at 14:18 - Reply

    I used Adminer… great tools. Small, fast, but strangely, I can’t connect it into Oracle. :)

  47. Interior designers in bangalore January 12, 2013 at 17:46 - Reply

    Thanks Ahmed, for sharing. I am learning php, it would be great for begineers

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