There are many such GUI tools available, like Rockmongo, PHPMoAdmin, Fang of Mango, UMongo, MongoExplorer, and MongoVUE, to name just a few. When it comes to using MongoDB with PHP-based projects, Rockmongo and PHPMoAdmin are good options. In this article, we’ll take a look at Rockmongo.
Rockmongo is an open source MongoDB administration tool written in PHP5. You’ll become familiar with using Rockmongo to create databases, collections and documents, query collections, and import and export data. Ready?
The requirements for running Rockmongo are:
- a web server running PHP
- PHP 5.1.6 or higher with session support
- the php_mongo extension for MongoDB
Once you have the proper environment, go ahead and download the latest version of Rockmongo from its download page at rockmongo.com/downloads.
Installation instructions can be found on the Rockmongo Wiki, but in general you’ll need to unzip the downloaded package in a web-accessible directory on your server root of your site and rename it to rockmongo. Open your web browser and access the index.php page from the location where you have installed Rockmongo.
The default username and password is “admin” and “admin”. If you changed the password during installation, then enter the appropriate credentials. Click on “Login and Rock” and you’ll be redirected to the home page of the Rockmongo application.
As you can see, the home page lists basic information about MongoDB Server location and connection, PHP Web Server and MongoDB settings. The left panel shows the list of databases and collections.
Creating Databases and Collections
The Databases tab lists all of the database available on the MongoDB server. To create a new database, click Create New Database on the Databases tab.
Then enter the name of the database and click Create (I’ll name mine “rockdb”). The newly created database will appear in the left panel.
To create a new collection, click on Create under the new database in the left pane and provide the desired name for the collection (I’ll use “blog_collection”).
When you provide the collection information, don’t worry about the Is Capped field. It’s safe to leave it unchecked.
The new collection will appear in the left panel under the database. You can click on the collection to list all of the documents in it. (Note that Mongo DB creates a default system.indexes collection when you create first collection in a database.)
To insert documents, click on the Insert tab and then the name of the collection.
We can specify the new document structure either as JSON or a PHP array. Choosing either format doesn’t make any difference to the document formed, it’s just a matter of comfort for developers.
After specifying the document, click on Save. Similarly, go ahead and insert other documents.
To view the documents inside a collection, click on the collection in the left panel and you will see a list of all of the documents in the content area. The records most recently inserted will appear first.
Updating, Deleting, and Duplicating Documents
You can update, delete or duplicate any document by clicking on the corresponding options provided on each document. Clicking on any of the links will take the document to edit mode where you can make changes in either JSON or PHP as you did earlier.
Querying the database is one of the important functions of any database administration tool. Whenever you click on a collection, you will find a text area on the top of the page for running queries against it.
Like the documents, query expressions can also be specified either as JSON or a PHP array. There are three action options available in the drop down: findAll, remove, and modify.
- findAll: This is the default option. Specify the find condition and click on Submit Query. The matching documents will appear in the search results.
- remove: This is similar to modify in that you just have to specify the condition for selecting documents, but the action removes the matching documents from the collection.
- modify: When you click on modify, you will see two text sections. The first section is to specify the condition for matching documents and the other is to specify the update script. This feature can be used to do bulk-updates.
This is one of the most useful features and probably the one I like the most in Rockmongo. The explain query is frequently used to analyze queries and their index usages. As shown below, you can specify your find query and then click on the Explain button. This will give all the cursor details for the query.
Importing and Exporting Databases
Import and export features are useful for when you want to backup the database. The import/export functionality in Rockmongo does the same task as the mongoimport and mongoexport functions.
To import the data in another database, go to that database and click on the Import tab. Choose the JS file you just downloaded, and the entire dataset will be imported to the database.
There are a lot of other features in Rockmongo that I’m sure you’ll want to explore once you start working with it. In this article I’ve covered only the most frequently used features to help you get a head start with it. If you have any questions related to the article, feel free to post your comments!
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Ashish is a Computer Science Engineer and works for one of the Big Four firms as a Technology Analyst. Prior to this, he co-founded an educational start-up. In his free time, Ashish read and write blogs, watches animation cartoons, movies or discovery channel. You can find his recent blogs on http://ashishtrivediblog.wordpress.com/
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