[DEV] phpBB Database Documentation

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drathbun
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[DEV] phpBB Database Documentation

Post by drathbun » Thu Jun 05, 2003 2:50 am

[Edit - August 24, 2005 - Moved code to new domain, updated link, changed description somewhat.]

Okay, this isn't really a "mod", even with the title formatted the way it is. What it is is a development project to support / assist MOD Authors. I've seen plenty of requests from folks that want to become MOD authors, or at least get a better understanding of how the phpBB database works. So I've started documenting the tables and columns in the baseline (i.e. non-modded) phpBB database.

I've also started a glossary of terms, some phpBB related, some database related, some that will hopefully help new folks (or even experienced folks) come up to speed on some of the lingo. For example, it was only recently I figured out that ACP = Admin Control Panel. And if it doesn't, please leave me to my delusion. 8)

Database documentation starting point
http://www.phpbbdoctor.com/doc_tables.php

Note: there is currently no link to this page on my site. I don't have a forum or category set up for discussion there yet, and I'm not sure if I will or should. It seems as though the best place to run the discussion would be here instead. Items in green are in the glossary; link to the glossary is at the bottom of the page listed above.

[Edit - New link for Glossary added ]
Glossary

Each table name is clickable, takes you to another screen that documents the structure of the table. I envision another screen that will document the various sub-systems for phpBB (authorization, posting, searching...) and am also working on a graphical database design that I can post. I envision having a total overall design, as well as more detailed design (close-ups, if you will) for the various sub-systems.

Anyway, I would appreciate feedback on the idea. Feel free to check out the info; you don't have to register on the forum or anything, just click on one of the link above. [Edit - In fact you cannot register on the board at this time.]

Comments / feedback welcomed.

Dave
Last edited by drathbun on Wed Aug 24, 2005 7:03 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Josh Windu » Thu Jun 05, 2003 2:58 am

cool well done :)
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Post by drathbun » Thu Jun 05, 2003 3:13 am

Josh Windu wrote: cool well done :)

It's a start. 8)

Dave

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Post by smithy_dll » Thu Jun 05, 2003 6:58 am

yay someone documenting stuff, we should talk on IRC sometime
8)

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Post by Graham » Thu Jun 05, 2003 9:01 am

It's looking good so far.

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Post by morpheus2matrix » Thu Jun 05, 2003 3:43 pm

good idea :wink:
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Post by drathbun » Thu Jun 05, 2003 5:13 pm

Davidls wrote: yay someone documenting stuff, we should talk on IRC sometime
8)

I got some sort of IRC software installed for the last mod author chat, but that's the extent of my experience with that tool. Is there a particular time / place when mod authors chat?

I'm still working out how to post the graphical stuff. Of course my goals are probably a bit lofty; but heck, you have to shoot high to hit anywhere, right? 8)

If anyone wants to help, if you have documented any tables, I can take a delimited file (column_name + column_description) and load it straight into my tables. The formatting that I've done is optional.

Dave

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Post by Black Fluffy Lion » Thu Jun 05, 2003 5:27 pm

That looks excellent, well done :) A couple of suggestions: it might be nice to have the column types linked to the mySQL documentation on that type (just a thought), and also I think it would useful to display whether a column is set to auto_increment or not. also, IMHO, the table looks a bit squashed together - perhaps putting the cellpadding up a bit would help.

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Post by drathbun » Thu Jun 05, 2003 5:34 pm

Black Fluffy Lion wrote: That looks excellent, well done :)

As I said, it's a start. More to come. 8)
A couple of suggestions: it might be nice to have the column types linked to the mySQL documentation on that type (just a thought),

Decent idea, that. I also need to put a note on the top / bottom / whatever that says the docs are specifically for MySQL. There are data types and other items that will be different for other RDBMS's.
and also I think it would useful to display whether a column is set to auto_increment or not.

I've got that info, just too much to put in one table, as in...
also, IMHO, the table looks a bit squashed together - perhaps putting the cellpadding up a bit would help.

I'm trying to sqeeze a lot of info into a small space. Thus the "squashed" look, most likely. 8) I'm more concerned with content at the moment, the formatting can be changed at any time. But 'preciate your input!

Dave

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Post by Graham » Thu Jun 05, 2003 6:38 pm

Just whilst the thought is in my head, it would be nice if the foreign keys somehow had a link to the table that they are linked to (in addition to the description of where it is drawn from), it would help in following the relationships I feel.
drathbun wrote: I got some sort of IRC software installed for the last mod author chat, but that's the extent of my experience with that tool. Is there a particular time / place when mod authors chat?

People keep trying to organise a time when everyone can get together, but it never seems to get very far :) Might be worth trying to set one up in say a weeks time to give everyone plenty of notice (have to find the thread for that).

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Post by GPHemsley » Thu Jun 05, 2003 7:43 pm

drathbun wrote: Is there a particular time / place when mod authors chat?

Well, MOD authors chat in channel #phpbbmod, regardless whether there's a scheduled meeting or not.

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Post by drathbun » Thu Jun 05, 2003 8:41 pm

Graham wrote: Just whilst the thought is in my head, it would be nice if the foreign keys somehow had a link to the table that they are linked to (in addition to the description of where it is drawn from), it would help in following the relationships I feel.

Problem with a link is that keys often link more than one place. So if you make it "clickable" in the column listing, you don't know where to go. What I have planned is a list of "relationships" (joins) that will appear at the bottom of the current display. Each relationship will show the table and column as they relate. Below that will, if all goes well, be a graphic that shows the table with all of it's related tables, at least to one level.

Keep the suggestions coming!

Dave

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Post by Numlock2KS » Fri Jun 06, 2003 7:58 am

Hello,

I could be wrong in my interpretation of what was being asked, but I believe that this was a request for a type of :Shudder: virtual flowchart of sorts. Something along these lines would be extremely helpful, but I fear that it would take many hundreds of hours to complete.

Thank You,

Numlock2KS

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Post by drathbun » Fri Jun 06, 2003 4:59 pm

Numlock2KS wrote: ...this was a request for a type of :Shudder: virtual flowchart of sorts...

That's part of what I had in mind for the "sub-systems". For example, there is a User Management sub-system. That includes creating a user account, updating the user account, logging in, and so on. There is a posting sub-system, which would include creating a topic, creating a post, editing a post, and possibly the moderator options (split, move, delete). Then there is the Search sub-system. And so on.

I've become very familiar with the user area, the posting area, and the search area. I'm more shaky on the whole session handling thing.

Anyway, there is quite a bit that could be done. 8)

Dave
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Post by drathbun » Sat Jun 07, 2003 8:18 pm

Graham wrote: Just whilst the thought is in my head, it would be nice if the foreign keys somehow had a link to the table that they are linked to (in addition to the description of where it is drawn from), it would help in following the relationships I feel.

I've added table relationships to the information displayed. If you click on a table, it opens up the list of columns for that table, and at the bottom lists all of the relationships (and the join clause) for the selected table.

Still working on how to display graphics ;-)

Dave

http://www.phpbbdoctor.com/doc_tables.php

[Edit - Updated link, moved to new domain ]
Last edited by drathbun on Wed Aug 24, 2005 6:59 am, edited 1 time in total.

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