Is there a data dictionary showing the relations between tables? If so, where can I find this?

I'd like to become more familiar with the schema :)

is this related question the best/official post to look at for the information?

2 Answers 2


Not really, although all of the relations follow a pretty self-evident naming pattern of <[prefix?][table]Id>. If you'd be interested in something a bit more visual, I'd suggest throwing an up vote in the direction of this feature request and I'd be willing to take a look at it. Data Explorer is open source, so direct patches are also welcome*.

In the meantime, the post you've linked to is probably the best source of supplementary information for the schema, although it's a bit out of date. The schema in the side bar of the query editor on Data Explorer is generated from the actual table metadata, so it's ultimately the most authoritative source.

*The code might be transitioning to GitHub in the near future, which should hopefully make this easier

  • Thanks, Tim! Having only recently worked professionally with 'industrial sized' relational databases, I now appreciate how useful data dictionaries can be. Even a simple excel spreadsheet that gives a description of the field, and it's foreign/primary key description would be really helpful! ... Upvote has been given...maybe i'll try assembling something if I get a better understanding...maybe..
    – d-_-b
    Dec 29, 2012 at 16:35
  • is there a more recent data dump than the September '11 version? I'm not sure how to get the database out of code.google.com/p/stack-exchange-data-explorer/source/browse/…
    – d-_-b
    Dec 31, 2012 at 14:12
  • 1
    You can grab the August '12 data dump from ClearBits.
    – Tim Stone
    Dec 31, 2012 at 14:41

Found this pretty useful site... not sure how up-to-date it is though.

http://sqlserverpedia.com/wiki/Understanding_the_StackOverflow_Database_Schema, there is also a SQL script on importing the data-dumps, but as I found out, there is a 2GB limit to SQL Server importing XMLS, so i'm still out of luck on that front. Eitherway, it's a very helpful resource.

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