MacOS is an extremely popular platform for developers, and the system is used across the world as a developer’s first choice to work.
There are numerous developer tools out there but one important one is database software. Especially database clients that are used to access either a local test database or an actual production database.
This Mac database software has many features, some programs more than others, and there are lots to choose from.
In this article, we will go through all the best available Mac database clients. We have reviewed all of them so you can check out their pros and cons and find which one suits you best.
First, if you are new to databases, check out how long it takes to learn SQL.
Best Database Software For Mac (Free & Paid)
There are loads of different database systems out there. You have MySQL, MongoDB and SQLite, and many more, but you need a decent database client to use to connect to these database systems. A GUI client makes the development process much easier and you can run your queries and test them using a GUI client.
Let’s get started, shall we?
TablePlus is one of the best database software available for Mac. It is a multi-purpose database client that runs on Windows and MacOS, it has huge support for different database systems.
It is a native GUI for relational databases, you can easily use this developer tool to view your database, run queries and organize data. It even supports some NoSQL systems like MongoDB and Redis.
You can use this tool to also backup and restore data, it uses modern security and has a focus on being fast so it does not get in your way.
Check out the complete review on TablePlus.
- It has many security features like TLS and multi-step authentication
- You can customize the appearance of the app
- It is a native GUI
- It supports inline editing
- Advanced filters
- It has code review and safe mode
You can find TablePlus and 240+ other apps in Setapp – the ultimate productivity booster. Setapp is a subscription service that gives you access to numerous useful macOS apps so it’s a great way to have plenty of Mac apps for an affordable price.
- It is not free
- Does not work on Linux
- No rollback buttons
- It does not support all database features
dbForge Studio for MySQL was designed for database developers, analysts, and admins who need a powerful and cutting-edge MySQL and MariaDB GUI for macOS, Windows, and Linux.
This tool stands out for being a very comprehensive MySQL GUI client with a user-friendly interface that lets users perform all kinds of MySQL database tasks.
One of the most important features of dbForge Studio is a MySQL Debugger. It’s an essential tool for tracking down and solving problems in your database system.
The Visual Query Builder makes it easy to build complex queries by letting you easily combine data sets, apply filters, set conditions, and sort results. Plus, it provides numerous features such as code auto-completion, syntax check, formatting, and code snippets to make it even easier.
You can generate stored procedures, compare and synchronize database schemas and data, generate test data, manage user accounts, and configure backup and restore tasks. You can also generate detailed reports on the performance and results.
- Advanced functionality with lots of options
- A quick, simple, and easy to use
- Helpful customer support through various channels
- Complete documentation and plenty of learning materials
- It has a free Express Edition and a free 30-day trial.
- Advanced functionality is available in paid editions
- No offline documentation
- Uses CrossOver for running on macOS
3. DBeaver (Free)
DBeaver is a multi-platform database tool for developers to manage and connect to different database systems.
It is a free database software for mac that works with popular database systems like MySQL, PostgreSQL and SQL Server, and many more. The UI has been carefully designed for increased usability.
This database client is open-source, plugins can be created for it, it uses the JDBC driver to connect to different databases and there is also an enterprise edition for advanced users.
- It’s free
- You can import and export data
- Move data between databases
- Simple to use
- Runs on any platform
- Has themes to choose from
- No option to auto invalidate connections
- Some functions are not explained very well and complicated
- UI is not as pretty and modern
4. HeidiSQL (Free)
A free and open-source database client that can connect to multiple different database systems. The aim of this database developer tool is ease of use, the focus is usability.
You can see and edit data structures once you connect to a database such as MySQL or SQL Server. You can even connect to multiple databases in one single window.
Not only that, but you can also use an SSH tunnel between this client and a database server. All the usual features like create, edit, delete functionality along with stored routines and SQL triggers.
- It’s free
- The interface is simple and easy to understand
- Works on any platform
- Lightweight install
- Some bugs have not been fixed
- Can be unstable sometimes
- The UI is not as pretty as others
MySQL Workbench is a unified visual tool and acts as a database client for MySQL database servers. It provides features for data modeling, SQL development, and SQL testing and acts as an admin tool for server configuration.
You can run MySQL Workbench on Windows, Mac, and Linux. You can create ERD models, generate and manage SQL databases, and import and export data.
The editor has advanced features for SQL development like code highlighting, a wizard to optimize queries, auto-complete, and execution history of SQL commands.
- Works on any platform
- You can design databases within the tool
- You can program SQL using the built-in editor
- Can be used to configure an SQL database server
- Sometimes can be unstable
- The UI can freeze or be slow at times
- Only focused on MySQL
6. Sequel Pro (Free)
Even though this developer tool uses the word ‘Pro’ it is actually 100% free to use. It is also open-source as well.
Focuses only on MySQL databases, it is fast and easy to use and because it focuses on MySQL, it supports a lot of features for that database system.
Related article: Top Open Source Databases
This database software for Mac can connect to local and remote MySQL servers, multiple at a time, and view, edit and delete data from tables.
- Native GUI client
- Supports many features of MySQL
- Easy to edit data in the table view mode
- Some bugs that are not fixed
- Support is lacking for recent updates
- No multiple query tabs
A fully blown database client and database IDE. This client is specifically tailored to suit the specific needs of SQL developers.
It is one tool for many databases, this database software for Mac has an intelligent query console, an efficient schema navigation, and you can create a database ERD within the IDE and connect tables together.
It also has version control features, so you can connect to Git or SVN and work with SQL queries from a version control system. Furthermore, it supports database systems like PostgreSQL, MySQL, Oracle, SQL Server, and managed services like Azure and AWS Redshift.
- Intelligent IDE, not just an editor
- Schema navigation features
- You can create an ERD
- Import and Export data directly
- SQL Explanation window
- Smart code completion
- It is not free
- Sometimes uses a lot of system memory and slows down
8. Valentina (Free)
With Valentina you can create, edit, update and manage data from this native GUI database client. It fully supports MySQL, MariaDB, PostgreSQL, and SQLite.
This database software for Mac can be used to manage multiple databases in tabs, dockable views, and windows. You can run create, drop, and alter SQL commands on tables. View data, change indexes, and set up SQL triggers.
Easily edit multiple properties of multiple objects at the same time and search tables rapidly with the built-in search system. You can even perform server administration and do things like adding users, dropping users, and managing user groups.
This GUI editor and database software for Mac can also be used to view logs and monitor the performance of the database server.
- Use it for free
- Advanced SQL features like triggers and stored procedures
- Search tables quickly
- Create and alter scheduled events
- Compress and clone data
- The free version requires lots of personal data to get access
- No support for DateTime data types
- Can be a slow startup
Navicat is a premium, multi-connection database development and administration tool for professional developers who work with databases. It works with database systems like MySQL, MariaDB, MongoDB, and SQL Server.
This native GUI database client can perform advanced database operations like stored procedures, triggers, functions, and SQL views.
You can efficiently transfer data across many databases, import and export data, run batch jobs for databases and use the query builder to test the performance of SQL commands. There is also a feature to synchronize data as well.
The GUI focuses on being easy to use and boasts an intuitive interface. This tool is quite advanced because you can connect your database to the Navicat cloud, so you can access your database systems on the go.
- Runs on any platform, Windows, Mac, and Linux
- Advanced SQL operations are supported
- Connect to the Navicat cloud
- Built-in editor for SQL queries
- SSH tunnel support
- Supports many file types for importing and exporting data
- Paid only
- Can be complicated to use
- Each database system has its own tool, not one package
- Linux client is not as up-to-date
10. Oracle SQL Developer (Free)
Built by a major company in the database systems market, Oracle, this is their official database client you can use to connect to their SQL servers. The Oracle SQL Developer tool is free for Mac and is a full IDE that simplifies the development and management of your Oracle database system.
SQL Developer is an end-to-end environment that you can use to fully manage your Oracle database. It has a fully-featured SQL console to run queries, scripts, and test commands.
You can run SQL reports, stored procedures, and SQL triggers and create database ERDs that can be generated automatically to start from.
- SQL history
- Dedicated client for Oracle databases
- Has a version that runs in the browser
- Can configure the server from this client
- Create and generate ERDs
- It is free to use
- Only works for Oracle databases
- The UI is not very pretty
- UI can be confusing
What Is The Best Database Program For Mac?
It is not easy to say which is the best database software for mac. You need to work out if you are after a general database client for development or are you after a full-blown IDE. For a general database developer tool, DBeaver is free and open-source and has basic to advanced features. If you want a full IDE then TablePlus or DataGrip will be more suitable options.