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A database is a collection of data that is stored in an organized manner.

This data can either be on a computer or on paper. It is, of course, more


efficient to store data on a computer like you can learn in this
course, as the computerization of this data makes it easy to retrieve and
perform operations on. Today, in the information age, databases of some
kind are maintained by all organization, big and small. They are essential in
ensuring that the day to day operations of an organization can run
smoothly.

An Introduction to Database Systems


There are several software-based products that help you build and
maintain databases. These software products are known as database
management systems (DBMS). In addition to letting you build a database,
most DBMS applications will interact with a user, or multiple users. They
will also let you perform operations on the data in their repository. DBMS
systems are always based on a computer language (which can vary). A user
has to type commands in this language if he wants to interact with the data
on the system as well as the software he is using.

Key Difference between DBMS and RDBMS


So what is the main difference between DBMS and RDBMS? The key
difference is that RDBMS (relational database management system)
applications store data in a tabular form, while DBMS applications store
data as files. Does that mean there are no tables in a DBMS? There can be,
but there will be no relation between the tables, like in a RDBMS. In
DBMS, data is generally stored in either a hierarchical form or a
navigational form. This means that a single data unit will have one parent
node and zero, one or more children nodes. It may even be stored in a
graph form, which can be seen in the network model.
In a RDBMS, the tables will have an identifier called primary key. Data
values will be stored in the form of tables. The relationships between these
data values will be stored in the form of a table as well. Every value stored
in the relational database is accessible. This value can be updated by the
system. The data in this system is also physically and logically independent.
You can say that a RDBMS is an in an extension of a DBMS, even if there
are many differences between the two. Most software products in the
market today are both DBMS and RDBMS compliant. Essentially, they can
maintain databases in a (relational) tabular form as well as a file form, or
both. This means that today a RDBMS application is a DBMS application,

and vice versa. However, there are still major differences between a
relational database system for storing data and a plain database system.

History of DBMS and RDBMS


Database management systems first appeared on the scene in 1960 as
computers began to grow in power and speed. In the middle of 1960, there
were several commercial applications in the market that were capable of
producing navigational databases. These navigational databases
maintained records that could only be processed sequentially, which
required a lot of computer resources and time.
Relational database management systems were first suggested by Edgar
Codd in the 1970s. Because navigational databases could not be searched,
Edgar Codd suggested another model that could be followed to construct a
database. This was the relational model that allowed users to search it for
data. It included the integration of the navigational model, along with a
tabular and hierarchical model.

The Client Server Architecture


Database management systems like the ones youll learn about in
this course (at least the pure DBMS applications) do not support the
client-server architecture, while relational database management systems
do. What is the client-server database model exactly? In a client-server
database model, data is stored in a central location on a server. This server
can share the data between one or more users, which are referred to as
clients. However, this is not a distinction that is relevant today, where a
DBMS program is a RDBMS program, and vice versa.

Ease of Access
It is generally easier to access data that is stored in a relational database.
This is because the data in a relational database follows a mathematical
model for categorization. Also, once we open a relational database, each
and every element of that database becomes accessible, which is not always
the case with a normal database (the data elements may need to be
accessed individually).
It is also easier to find data in a relational database. You can query a
relational database in its native language without knowing the value of a
key or index.

Storage Standards

Relational databases are harder to construct, but they are better structured
and more secure. They follow the ACID (atomicity, consistency, isolation
and durability) model when storing data. The relational database system
will also impose certain regulations and conditions that may not allow you
to manipulate data in a way that destabilizes the integrity of the system.
In a regular database, the data may not be stored following the ACID
model. This may introduce inconsistencies in the database. It may even
cause the database to become unstable over time or it may put the security
of the data at risk.

The Best Database Management Program in the


Market
At the moment, if you look at sales, Oracle is the best database
management system in the market. Theres a great beginners course
for Oracle here. It is far ahead of its nearest competitors, which include
IBM (DB2 UDB), SAP, Microsoft (SQL Server) and Teradata. Oracle is
produced and marketed by the Oracle Corporation. Oracle and IBM have a
working partnership of sorts- many of their products are compatible with
each other (mostly because they share the same customers).
The Oracle database can be queried through PL/SQL (Procedural
Language/ Structured Query Language). PL/SQL is derived from the Pascal
language, and its coding bears a striking similarity to Ada. If you are
familiar with Java or C++, you will find it easy to learn PL/SQL.
If youre looking to become a system administrator, you can either get
yourself a copy of Oracle or you can look at some of the open source
alternatives in the market today like Firebird, MySQL and PostgreSQL.
Here at Udemy, we have lots of courses to help you learn whatever system
administration tool interests you, like this beginners course on
MySQL development.
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