CA Technologies Readies New Release Of ERwin Data Modeler

The new software, CA ERwin Data Modeler r8, provides businesses with a better way to manage increasingly complex data structures within corporate databases and applications, according to the company, and migrate it to cloud-based systems.

"We see this as a game-changer for us and for the industry," said Robert Lutton, sales and marketing vice president at Sandhill Consultants, a Grantham, U.K.-based solution provider, in an interview. Sandhill resells ERwin in that country, as well as in North America, and provides a range of consulting, implementation and training services around the software.

ERwin is used to model data for such tasks as database design and requirements analysis when developing custom information systems, including data warehouses and transactional applications.

CA ERwin Data Modeler is sold almost exclusively through channel partners, said Donna Burbank, senior director of ERwin product marketing, in an interview. VARs "are our best asset because most ERwin implementations go with some kind of data-intensive project," she said.

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Earlier 7.x releases of ERwin focused on rebuilding the functionality of the product's core engine, Lutton said. Release 8 overhauls the user interface, providing ways for developers take full advantage of those capabilities. "What version 8 does is graphically update the UI so it's easier to use and easier to navigate," he said.

The enhanced data visualization and personalization capabilities provide developers with more options for creating views of data that meet the needs of users' specific roles, across different industries, Lutton said. "Before, it wasn't easy to manage from an end-user point of view."

Altogether the new interface incorporates some 500 customer requests, Burbank said.

The new ERwin release has SAP BusinessObjects Crystal Reports reporting tools built directly into the interface under an OEM deal with SAP. That lets users create reports using the information stored in ERwin. While older releases of ERwin worked with the reporting tools, they were not embedded within the toolset and were installed separately.

Release 8 also supports the latest versions of the most popular commercial database systems, included providing extended support for partitioning, compression and query optimization syntax within IBM DB2 for z/OS and LUW v9.x.

"We expect a good portion of our installed base [of customers] to move to this release fairly quickly," Lutton said, when asked about pent-up demand for the new software. The new visualization features will be a strong selling point for attracting new customers, he added.

The software will be generally available Feb. 18.