Database UI Forms like in alternatives to :

Features I mostly look for is

  • rapid creation of convenient UIs like forms, reports, to rapidly make interfaces allowing data editions in connected databases for non-technical users.
  • at least adding new entries + viewing exiting, preferably ability to edit existing as well


  • running at least on Linux
  • opensource, free (in sense of freedom e.g. Apache 2, MIT, GPL license)


  • It can run as desktop application, or in browser, both options are fine.
  • Let's assume that task of creating forms is performed by technical person, therefore definition of forms does not have to be visually like in MS Access or Base (although very welcome), but also can be as code. The requirement mentioned earlier is "rapid", therefore if it's not clickable, than easy and fast to define in some DSL or using convenient programming library, easy to deploy.


The Vaadin Framework is a leading product for building web apps using only Java on the server-side while being automagically rendered in the client's web browser using web standards. So while HTTP, HTML, CSS, DOM, JavaScript, AJAX, WebSocket, Servlet, and such are being used on your behalf, you need not learn any of them, you need know only Java.

For no cost, layout your forms procedurally, "add label", "add button", "add field", and so on. This is my favored approach.

Or use their commercial tool Vaadin Designer for a drag-and-drop visual environment to layout the forms.

As for adding and editing records, Vaadin has a data model that makes it easy to bind data to lists, data grid, and detail form. Well documented in a guide. Also video demos on YouTube.

Regarding deployment, you can run Vaadin on top of most any Java Servlet container such as Tomcat or Jetty. By default a Vaadin project has an embedded version of Jetty to run your web app conveniently during development, or you can hook your IDE up to an external container of your choice.

Vaadin in open-source under the Apache licence. Runs on top of Java as do the IDEs (IntelliJ, NetBeans, Eclipse), so you can develop on Linux as well as deploy there.

Whoops, I wrote the below before I noticed your Linux and free-of-cost opensource requirements. They are fairly low cost so I'll leave this section.


Xojo is a proprietary tool and language that offers a server-side app execution environment like Vaadin. Easy enough for beginning programmers yet powerful enough for professional developers.


FileMaker is a venerable tool for macOS and Windows to create layouts for exiting records in a simple database, mainly for single table (one list of records).

Works either as a server over network/internet or as a standalone single-computer app.


4D is another cross-platform tool similar to FileMaker but providing a much more powerful relational database engine and server.

Includes a visual layout editor that is highly integrated with the database; it "knows" about the fields in the database record (row).

Works either as a server over network/internet or as a standalone single-computer app.

  • Is any of these opensource and free (e.g. Apache 2, MIT license) and runs on Linux? Those were my requirements. – Grzegorz Wierzowiecki May 16 '17 at 8:18
  • @GrzegorzWierzowiecki Above the line I drew, yes. – Basil Bourque May 16 '17 at 8:59

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