A schematic diagram template is determined by the schematic feature classes with which it is associated and its schematic builder. Each builder expects specific input data/context from which it is able to populate the schematic feature classes associated with a diagram template and so generate/update the diagram's contents. For example, the Standard builder is designed to work from GIS features organized into a geometric network that are highlighted in a map document, the Network Dataset builder deals with any solved network analysis layer, and the XML builder works from input XML data. But regardless of its builder, you can also configure some of the schematic feature classes associated with a diagram template to get diagrams containing schematic features managed and built by the specified schematic builder that are mixed with other schematic features coming from custom queries that operate from any type of database. For example, suppose you have a network dataset with stations stored in a geodatabase and some other data tables describing the interior equipment for each station stored in the same geodatabase or in any other database. You can use the Network Dataset builder to build schematic features from any layer produced by network analysis performed on the network dataset features, then supplement the resulting graph with new schematic features built by querying records from the data tables for each station that may have been returned by the Network Dataset builder.
In ArcGIS Schematics versions prior to 10, there was another schematic builder, the Custom Query Based builder, to manage diagrams whose entire content was built from custom queries. This builder no longer exists. Now, in cases where all the schematic feature classes associated with a diagram template are configured with custom queries, you must use the Standard schematic builder. This builder has been enhanced to support the generation of schematic diagrams from GIS features highlighted in a map and the generation of diagrams entirely built by querying information stored in any type of database. The main condition for generating diagrams from custom queries is that the database must contain information related to the topology so the schematic links in the diagrams are connected—that is, the information required to identify the origin and extremity of each schematic link in the diagrams that will be generated.
This help topic focuses on the generation and updating of diagrams based on custom queries using the Standard builder, that is, diagrams in which the entire content is built by custom queries. It provides information on how the Standard builder operates in this case. To configure a Standard builder diagram template based on schematic feature classes that are entirely populated by custom queries, you must use the Schematic Dataset Editor utility. The Configuring a Standard builder diagram template to build schematic diagrams from custom queries topic in the Schematic Dataset Editor Help explains how the Standard builder must be configured in this particular case. The configuration of custom queries on the schematic feature classes that you want to associate with a diagram template, regardless of its builder, is detailed in the Specifying schematic feature class query and identifier using the Schematic Query/Identifier Editor topic.