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NocoDB – Turn your SQL database into a Nocode platform (nocodb.com)
108 points by sysadm1n 78 days ago | hide | past | favorite | 38 comments



I think the product direction holds some real value.

However, as a potential customer I do not know what this product can do from browsing the webpage for a short a mount of time. Hints like "Airtable alternative" is no use to me when I don't know what Airtable is good for.

The Videos (as commented by other hn'ers are not really helpful in showing what's going on).


From the other comments, I haven't tried tooljet (https://tooljet.io) or budibase (https://budibase.com) but I did have a look at those apps.

This, for me, was easiest to try out. And quite impressive, honestly.

The key point was that in each table, the 'title' column (created by default) has a special meaning as they show up in the join columns cleanly.

Amazing and congratulations.


This has been my experience with internal tool builders too. The barrier to entry is quite high to try most of them and it's really hard to have a whole team test them out.

This adoption issue was part of the inspiration for Wax [0] which lets you build internal tools on top of Google Sheets. If your team is already using Sheets, it's much easier to add the missing pieces there vs. pushing people to an entirely separate platform.

0 - https://www.wax.run/


Thank you.

In noco we've the concept of primary-value (like primary key) and that shows up automatically when you join with other tables (defaults to 'title'). However the primary value column can be changed to any other column too (by hovering on the column name).

Other tools in the list do not give the smart-spreadsheet automatically when you connect to databases. And frankly, these are two different tools we are comparing.


Oh, ok! Thanks for letting me know. Will surely try it out!


(Founder here - glad to see the post)

NocoDB[1] is a Free & Open Source Airtable alternative that transforms your own existing databases like MySQL/Postgres/MsSQL/SQLite into a smart-spreadsheet.

Happy to answer any queries and you can also join our discord[2] for any help.

[1] : https://github.com/nocodb/nocodb

[2] : https://discord.gg/5RgZmkW


[3] Show HN: NocoDB – Open-Source Airtable Alternative, https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=27303783


What I do not like is that it tries to subscribe me to a newsletter on a self hosted app (you might not recognize the checkbox at the first look). And the google feedback form inside the app is quite weird. Besides from that it seems quite interesting, especially for non-coders.


Thank you for the feedback. We will have it not selected from next release. Google form can be closed (right top x icon).


This is fantastic, especially as we see trends around owning your data. Tools like this allow us to migrate away from proprietary solutions like Airtable or Google Sheets.

On the other hand, I could also see this being used as somewhat as an "Admin UI" for SaaS software administrators.


Yes, it could be easily used as Admin UI. We create a virtual schema for every database that we connect to. If there are schema changes done outside noco GUI - then noco has a sync option that does automatically sync the changes.


nocodb dev team was very generous for me when helping me evaluate their product for my use case, including creating a test environment to understand my request.

I ended up not using them, but they created an issue for me on GitHub, saying my request was on their roadmap.

https://github.com/nocodb/nocodb/issues/580

Oh and they quickly researched a solution to an installation bug I was experiencing.

https://github.com/nocodb/nocodb/issues/579

TL;DR: great customer service from nocodb, so I'm happy to consider nocodb for future projects.


> https://github.com/nocodb/nocodb/issues/580

What's a Page Designer? Do you mean forms for data entry? Or report pages (read-only data)?


We support Forms.

By page designer - its about custom reports from the data.


Do you support custom layouts (including big text boxes for certain fields, or at least a pop up zoom), and embeddable subforms? Yes, I am basically looking for MS Access for the web, and I realize I'd have to give up A LOT, but certain things I just need (a gui for designing complicated forms is nice to have, but not necessary, but the layout is).


When you say embeddable subforms, do you mean master-detail forms? What is your scenario?


Yep, master form (single row or multi, row select loads children) with detail child(ren) (usually multi row, but sometimes single), direct relationship or via xref table(s). Hope that makes sense?

I don't mind so much having to write some plumbing code if necessary as long as I can get the job done.


Hey, happy to bump in here. I've added page designer to our immediate roadmap now.


That's great news! Thank you for the update, and nice work moving things forward. :-)


How does this compare to Budibase? https://budibase.com/ Budibase seems to have a workflow engine as well.


Budibase also has a more comprehensive UI builder, internal database, forms, configurable onboarding, free SSO, Kubernetes support, a cloud platform, off the top of my head.


Yeah, it looks packed with features!!! Self hosted, automations, hooks

Can it scale to B2C number of users? Are there technical limitations that prevent this if we keep adding servers?



Past threads:

Thank HN: A customer found us on Hacker News and wrote our first angel check - https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=28606258 - Sept 2021 (6 comments)

Show HN: NocoDB – Open-Source Airtable Alternative - https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=27303783 - May 2021 (157 comments)


The "how it works" section is just some short soundless YouTube videos that don't explain what is going on. I think they need to work harder on explaining their product.


Thank you for the input, we will work on them.


Have you guys seen ToolJet? https://tooljet.io/


These sorts of tools make me think of Lotus Notes or Access applications. Didn’t couchbase do some self hosted UX as well?


It looks very promising - but my experience with MSSQL hasn't been optimal.

Definitely worth keeping an eye on this project.


I initially read that as “you don’t like MSSQL” but I guess you mean using this tool with MSSQL wasn’t optimal?


Assuming you are aware that NocoDB claims to support MySQL, Postgres, MariaDB, SQLite as well as SQL server, what was your suboptimal experience with MSSQL?


What was the Microsoft SQL server version ? and the issue.


Does this work with CockroachDB?


We're using knexjs to connect to databases. If knexjs generally works with your Cockroachdb. We should be able to work as well. Please reach out on our discord for any help.


What exactly is it good for?


Strongly typed multiplayer Excel.


That is one good way to put it :)


Spreadsheets has limits to number of rows/cells. And they tend to corrupt after certain limit easily. Then things like creating relation between sheets or deriving different views are not possible/easier in spreadsheet. This is when teams using spreadsheets start to move to databases. But it involves a lot of effort to build a spreadsheet like product on databases. This is where noco helps.




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