Vindya Hemali

Transformation of graph databases towards graph platforms - Part 2

Recently, Neo4j announced their transformation from being a provider of a graph databases to their stance as a creator of graph platforms. Thus – in essence – shifting focus towards the growing needs of Neo4j deployment processes – based on complex IT infrastructure – and obtaining various users and roles through the use of Neo4j.

(Read part 1 here)

neo4j_logo
General design of Neo4j graph platform

(Fig 1: General design of Neo4j graph platform)

An insight to Graph Platforms

Neo4j Graph Platforms are built around the Neo4j native graph database and other including components which are given below:

It is important to know about the Neo4j Desktop tool as most developers are only familiar with the Neo4j Community and Enterprise editions.

What is Neo4j Desktop?

Neo4j Desktop is the new ‘mission control console’ for developers and includes important features such as:

  • free registration
  • development license for Enterprise Edition
  • installer for APOC (Awesome Procedures On Cypher – user defined procedure library) library under plugins
  • installer for GraphQL, Graph Algorithm and Java upgrades
  • remote connection for production servers
  • version upgrading
  • logs and terminal facilities
Advantages of Neo4j desktop are as follows:
  • built in user management, user security, Kerberos authentication and LDAP integration
  • performance from compiled cypher, enterprise lock management and space reuse
  • schema features such as Node Keys and composite indexes
  • scaling features such as unlimited graph size and bolt drivers
  • automated installation of platform components and access to platform interfaces like query management and the Neo4j browser
  • exposure to production deployment features like HA & DR clustering, secure Causal Clustering, IPv6 and least-connected load balancing

The amount of time these features help save – for a developer – is astounding, and now it is all available for free upon registration.

Comparison: Neo4j Community versus Enterprise Edition
Comparison - Enterprise Edition versus Community Edition

(Table 1: Comparison – Enterprise Edition versus Community Edition – source)

How to install Neo4j Desktop on Windows

The Neo4j Desktop tool can be downloaded under ‘Neo4j Desktop’ section using the following link ‘https://neo4j.com/download/other-releases/’ and follow the steps accordingly:

  • Choose windows setup file and download
  • Select installation directory and click Install

(Figure 2: Set installation location)

  • Open Neo4j desktop tool
  • click on new graph
Neo4j ‘create a new graph’ interface

(Figure 3: Neo4j ‘create a new graph’ interface)

option to create a ‘local graph’ or a ‘remote graph’

(Figure 4: option to create a ‘local graph’ or a ‘remote graph’)

 

  • Users are able to connect remotely to a running neo4j server – the below example shows how to connect with a local neo4j server which is running on port 7474
connecting to a local Neo4j server

(Figure 5 – connecting to a local Neo4j server)

 

  • connect to the server with your username and password, and click connect
connect to the server with appropriate use credentials

(Figure 6 – connect to the server with appropriate use credentials)

 

  • connecting to the server will bring up the enabled bolt connection and neo4j browser URLs
  • next, activate the database
activating the database

(Figure 7 – activating the database)

 

  • Next, open the browser (It will open in a new window)
open Neo4j in a new browser

(Figure 8 – open Neo4j in a new browser)

  • Create a new database
  • Create a new project
  • Create a local graph
create a local graph

(Figure 9 – create a local graph)

 

  • Set database access controls
provide a name and password for the newly created database

(Figure 10 – provide a name and password for the newly created database)

  • once successfully created, go to ‘manage’ and carry out the required installations on APOC, Graph Algorithms, GraphQL
The newly created ‘MitraiProcess’ database

(Figure 11 – The newly created ‘MitraiProcess’ database)

You will find more tabs available with features as logs, plugins, upgrades, etc..

 

  • Under the  ‘Plugins’ tab (see figure 12 below), the user is able to install provisioned plugins such as APOC, Graph Algorithms and GraphQL
Additional plugins section

(Figure 12 – Additional plugins section)

  • the ‘Upgrade’ tab displays all Neo4j releases and a user is able to manage versioning
Neo4j version controlling and upgrades

(Figure 13 – version control and upgrades)

 

  • In the ‘Administration’ section  users are able to change the database password as well
  • Start the database connection (If the default port 7474 is already used, it will show how ports are changed to new ones)
  • Open the browser and start working on it
starting the database connection on Neo4j

(Figure 14 – starting the database connection)

Neo4j browser window is same as normal neo4j browser and all features are included.

Neo4j browser window contains all features

(figure 15 – the Neo4j browser window contains all features)

  • Note – It supports suggestions for query keywords, labels, procedures on query typing
Neo4J supports suggestions for queries and labels

(figure 16 – Neo4J supports suggestions for queries and labels

The Neo4j desktop tool is highly flexible and also very easy to learn. You may read more about ‘Understanding the main building blocks of Neo4j’ here.

Thank you for reading this Tech Guide. We hope you will also read our next tutorial so that we can help you solve some more interesting problems.

Vinday-hettige

Vindya Hemali

Software Engineer | Mitra Innovation