PhpMyAdmin is a great program for managing MySQL databases and is included in most web hosting control panels. But what turning a client loose in there? Scary.

Does the thought of letting a client manage their database through phpMyAdmin make you tremble in fear?

If you need to let a client edit their own databases—add and remove records, there are a lot—A LOT—of things that can be messed up. Do you have to steady yourself on the furniture at just the thought?

I’m right there with you. There are way too many options available for mucking up a database using phpMyAdmin. Not only that, but you don’t want your clients passing out or going into an anxiety attack when they see phpMyAdmin for the first time.

Simple Database Management With Vty

Without having to build a custom admin system or anything like that, you can allow your clients to add and edit data in their databases with Vty.

What exactly is Vty?

  • Web-based MySQL database management script written in PHP
  • Lets you view and edit your database tables
  • It’s only 1 file—yes, just one 30KB file needs to be uploaded to the server
  • It’s free under a GPL license
  • Supports multiple languages (English, Turkish, Italian, Spanish)

While, Vty (currently version 1.6) still gives a little more power to your client than needed in most cases, with an acceptable amount of effort, you can trim out the bits you don’t need/want.

Try It Yourself

As LeVar Burton always said, “But you don’t have to take my word for it”.

Customizing Vty

Since Vty is just a PHP script, you can edit and change the bits you need to customize the experience. Here’s just a taste of what’s possible with a bit of extra work (from one of my recent projects).

Simplified entry page with client’s name and branding

Editing a record inline / text links replaced with icons

In the above screenshots, I replaced some of the text links with icons from the Silk icon set. I also changed some of the wording to be more logical for my client and project (ex: changed ‘Insert a New Record’ to ‘Add a New Member’).

The tricky part of customizing Vty is that the classes, IDs and functions are written in Turkish. That’s fine if you speak Turkish, but less helpful if you don’t. Fortunately, most everything’s in a function and there’s some helpful comments in English in the code, so you can use this to suss out everything. Search and replace will be a big help.

MS SQL Anyone?

There’s also a script that works with MS SQL that you could try: MS SQL Simple Manager (toward the bottom of the page). I haven’t tried this, but it’d be worth a shot checking out.

Database Management Made Easy

Vty is a great free tool for giving your clients and simple and safe way of managing information in their databases. I’m certainly glad I found it and hopefully this will be helpful

Is anybody already using Vty in some of their projects? I’d love to hear about how you’re making use of this script.

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