What Are the Different Types of Databases That Exist Today?

If your business handles any kind of data, you need to be using databases.

There have been many developments over the years, resulting in a range of types of databases, each with different functions and capabilities. When creating a database knowing what different options you have will help you pick the right one.

For a rundown on some of the most widely used types of databases, keep reading.

Hierarchical Database

A hierarchical database makes use of ranks to categorize data. A typical example could be a workplace where the organization is at the top, with departments below. You could then break these departments down into teams, and so on.

One of the main downsides of these is that the structure makes them difficult to edit. If you need to add in new data it can sometimes require a lot of work.

Network Database

A network database is similar to a hierarchical database, but the child records can link to multiple parent records rather than just one. This is a good way of assembling unstructured data into a detailed framework.

These are better for two-directional relationships, but due to their complex nature, it’s typically not possible to edit them.

Object-Oriented Database

This type of database allows the entires to be represented as objects. Each object can be easily called or referenced which reduces the workload on the database.

You can link multiple objects together through different methods and each of these objects can contain various elements. These databases are fast and highly efficient, making them ideal for situations where data needs to be looked up quickly.

Relational Database

Relational databases are often seen in production lines and management systems. Each entry in the database has a unique identity/record. This allows each individual piece of information to connect with every other piece in the database.

Tables can be used to help organize data. Despite their complex structure, using relational databases is actually quite simple. Database cardinality makes navigating and finding data quick and easy.

NoSQL Database

Also known as a non-SQL or non-relational database, these are designed for the storage and retrieval of information. They use tables much like relational databases but with a much more simple design. This generally makes for faster operations, and they’re often a more flexible option.

NoSQL databases are very scalable, but their design makes file sizes very large. They also don’t allow a GUI (graphical user interface).

Cloud Database

The number of people working remotely has spiked in recent years, resulting in a huge increase in the use of cloud technology. Cloud databases can be accessed by anyone with permission from any location, as long as they have an internet connection.

They’re generally SaaS models and are flexible, scalable, and low-maintenance.

Types of Databases

There are many more types of databases, with some specific types being better suited for different situations. Having a good understanding of the advantages and disadvantages of each will help you determine which is best for a certain situation.

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