A good UI is an important part of the development experience. The MongoDB Shell works great for administrative actions, but when working with larger amounts of data, the UI becomes fairly important.
In 2014, we discussed 4 of the top MongoDB GUIs: MongoVue, MongoHub, RockMongo, and Robomongo. We left those at the end of this post for your review. Since then, however, many new options have emerged and we thought we’d share our updates.
Comparing MongoDB GUIs
In this article, we are going to compare 4 of the top MongoDB User Interfaces that help developers increase their productivity and manage their database. We’ll be focusing on data visualisation, presentation, and editing. As always, your mileage will vary depending on your scenario and preferences. Read on to find out which is the best MongoDB GUI for you, updated for 2016.
1. MongoDB CompassMongoDB Compass is a tool that helps you visually analyse and understand your MongoDB data. Click To Tweet
It provides users with a graphical view of their MongoDB schema without requiring the use of query language. In MongoDB, collections do not enforce a rigidly-defined document structure. This can make it difficult to explore and understand the underlying data and its structure without a tool like MongoDB Compass.
MongoDB Compass analyses your documents and displays rich structures within your collections in a simple and intuitive GUI. It allows you to quickly visualize and explore your schema to understand the frequency, types, and ranges of fields in your data set.
Here are some features provided by MongoDB Compass:
- Visually explore your data
- Run ad hoc queries in seconds
- View your query performance
- Compass empowers you to make smarter decisions about indexing, document validation, and more
- No command line needed
Note: While the UI looks slick, it is neither a full-featured development UI or a full-featured BI tool to mine your data. Will be interesting to see in which direction it will proceed.
Platforms: Mac OS X, Windows
Pricing: Free for development purposes; contact MongoDB for Commercial/Advanced Licenses
2. RobomongoRobomongo is a pioneer of some interesting GUI ideas and techniques that were implemented for the first time in MongoDB ecosystem.Click To Tweet
Here are some features provided by Robomongo:
- Native and cross-platform MongoDB manager
- Uses very little of your machine resources
- The first and still the only tool that embeds real MongoDB shell
- The first graphical tool that provides real auto-completion
Note: Full featured commercial grade development UI for MongoDB. Development was stopped for a long time due to funding issue but it appears to be back on track now. Platforms: Mac OS X, Windows, Linux Pricing: Free Community Edition, other versions start at $12/month billed annually.
More Info: https://robomongo.org/buy
3. 3T MongoChefWhether you're exploring your local database or working with shards and replica sets, MongoChef allows you to do all of it.Click To Tweet
MongoChef is another preferred tool for developers to work with MongoDB. Whether you’re exploring your local database or working with shards and replica sets, MongoChef allows you to do all of it. 3T helps thousands of MongoDB developers and administrators with their everyday jobs by providing the finest MongoDB tools in the market.
The MongoChef Shell provides effortless multi-line editing and auto-completion – including of course database and collection names. Creating complex update or aggregation queries is a breeze. MongoChef Shell output is fully formatted, highlighted and searchable. A complete command history is also available.
Here are some more features provided by 3T MongoChef:
- Free to use forever for non-commercial use
- Uniquely, built and optimized specifically for MongoDB
- Full MongoDB shell integration with IntelliShell
Note: Full featured Development UI – Highly recommended for any developer working with MongoDB Platforms: Windows, Mac, Linux
Pricing: Free for non-commercial use, other versions start at $299 one-time-only fees.
More info here.
4. MongoBoosterThe built-in language service knows all possible completions, methods, properties, variables, keywords, even the MongoDB collection names, field names, and operators. The IntelliSense suggestions will pop up as you type.Click To Tweet
MongoBooster is a shell-centric cross-platform GUI tool for MongoDB v2.2-3.2, which provides update-in-place, fluent query builder, ES6 syntax support and true Intellisense experience.
The built-in language service knows all possible completions, methods, properties, variables, keywords, even the MongoDB collection names, field names, and operators. The IntelliSense suggestions will pop up as you type.
MongoBooster supports mongoose-like fluent query builder API which enables you to build up a query using chaining syntax, rather than specifying a JSON object. The aggregation framework is now fluent as well. You can use it as currently documented or via the chainable methods.
Here are some more features provided:
- Tons of built-in snippets
- MongoDB shell extensions to make life inside of the MongoDB shell a little bit easier
- MongoBooster supports in-place editing in result tree view
Full list of features: http://mongobooster.com/features
Platforms: Mac OS X, Windows, Linux Pricing: Free for non-commercial use, other versions start at $79.
More info here.
The Best Mongo GUI’s of 2014 – Recommendations from 2014-
MongoVue is a desktop GUI for the windows platform. It has a simple clean UI and the basic features are free. Data can be presented in text view, tree view or table view. You can also save your find queries for later usage – we find this rather convenient. The more advanced features require you to purchase a license. Overall the software appears stable and well maintained.
is a native Mac GUI for MongoDB. It provides you an option to connect to your MongoDB server through a SSH tunnel which is fairly convenient from a security perspective. The “StatMonitor” feature give you a live display of stats a.k.a mongostat. The query interface is a little bit more limited in that it only seems to support a tree view. Also, there is no way to save a find query for later. In our experience, the software appears to work fairly well but it doesn’t seem like it is being maintained – so use at your own risk.
An HTML-based MongoDB GUI. The GUI is authored in PHP and is open source. The downside of the HTML based approach is that you need a PHP server to run this GUI. You can also choose to run the PHP server on your local box. The UI is no frill, fairly easy to use and supports all the common options of working with collections, stats etc. The find interface only presents data in a tabular/text model – so it could be an issue when you are working with multilevel documents. Also, there doesn’t seem to be a lot of check-in activity – so we suspect the project is inactive.
A shell-centric MongoDB GUI that supports the Windows, iOS, and Linux platforms. It’s still early days for RoboMongo with the latest version being 0.8.4. It is also one of the few GUI’s that supports SSL connections to your MongoDB server. There is also support for connecting through an SSH tunnel. The query interface displays data in tree view, table view and text view.
You can also save your queries for later usage. One of the coolest features is that it also has support for the shell – so you can still continue to use the shell commands that you are comfortable with. There are some quirks in the UI which I think will get worked out over time. If actively maintained I think this could be the best cross platform GUI for MongoDB.
Which MongoDB GUI is best?
In the end, it all boils down to your requirements in terms of budget, usage needs, team members, the number of features etc. Take your pick and good luck on your journey. Build something awesome and sign up for our newsletter below, we might just feature your project!