What is a database server and what is it used for?

Powering the applications, programs and tools that we love, the servers dedicated to the operational use of data are called database servers.

Database servers are powerful computers that store and manage data stored on a server for a network of users and devices. Terms database servers, Database Management Systems (DBMS) and Relational DBMS (RDBMS) are used interchangeably, but RDMBS is the most commonly implemented type of database management. Collectively, database server solutions provide centralized data management, security, access and authorization controls, and an interactive repository for a network of users.

This article examines what a database server is, what databases, software and DBMS vendors offer, and more.

Learn more about the range of server types, features and purposes in our Servers Guide.

Why do i need a database server?

From startup to blue-chip business, data is an essential part of the modern organization. Data may be part or all of the vendor products or services offered by an organization in the case of some SaaS providers.

This reliance on data means that vigilance through robust development standards and consistent maintenance is essential. Added to all this is a universe of highly sensitive consumer and owner data. Negligence or a compromise could have serious consequences.

What are database servers used for?

Database servers are at the heart of the flow and preservation of data that allows most applications, programs and tools used by organizations and consumers today.

Centralized data management

People and organizations everywhere need the ability to store and manage data. Of email clients To store critical application data, database servers provide a central location for data management and maintenance. While small organizations can use a file server Where NAS for storage purposes, database servers are the natural step to scale network workloads.

Preserve data integrity

Given the importance of data, whether proprietary or provided by consumers, security must be considered. Servers naturally segment endpoint data. However, database servers, in particular, can ensure that access controls meet requirements. risk management conditions. Features such as user-defined validation and integrity constraints further protect data.

Discover the best data protection software and tools in eSecurity Planet’s Best Database Security Solutions.

Equipped for multiple users

A database server can operate for a small office staff or a worldwide network of individual users. In either case, multiple user access to the underlying databases, including permissions to update, delete, or recover data, are key features. The different database users include:

Application programmers

Developers for the development and maintenance of DBMS

Database administrators

Manage all DBMS and support staff

End users

Individuals using the DBMS

Ease of data sharing

Databases are the basis of most websites and web applications, as well as their ability to create, present and maintain data for communication purposes. With a authorisation protocol, the database servers are remotely accessible and designed to serve the workloads and complex queries. A multitude of users can access databases, collaborate and update records simultaneously.

A graphic image showing how databases and database servers provide resources to client devices, sometimes through intermediaries such as web servers and application servers.  Designed by Sam Ingalls.

How do database servers work?

Most database servers operate on the client-server model, receiving requests from client devices and their respective users, and then returning the desired response. The graphic above shows how databases play a fundamental role in providing resources to network clients.

Database servers are powerful appliances capable of working with multiple databases to deliver resources to clients, sometimes with the help of intermediaries such as application servers and web servers. The scenarios in the graphic above describe how databases can provide resources with or without these additional intermediaries.

For example, databases can provide resources to clients without a web or application server (typically on-premises). Less complex tools do not require an application server, whereas many application servers today have web server capabilities.

Read more: Web servers vs application servers

What is the controller-agent model?

Known as the Slave master architecture until 2017, the controller-agent model is an alternative to the client-server model. One device – the controller device – has unilateral control over one or more agent devices. This model displays the security and integrity capabilities of the DBMS; the controller primary server replicates its data logs to agent devices.

By implementing a controller-agent model, administrators have a backup solution, evolve with more confidence, balance workloads, and mitigate individual agent failures.

Read also : Best Virtual Machine (VM) Backup Software

Database management systems (DBMS)

What is a Database Management System (DMBS)?

A database management system (DBMS) is software for storing, retrieving and managing data. First developed in the 1960s, DBMS technology has been essential to the data-driven economy. The most widely deployed type of database server today is RDBMS, but object-oriented DBMS is a popular choice for developers.

Technical characteristics of the DBMS

  • Database languages to define entities, relationships, constraints and privileges
  • Transaction processing to manage concurrent usage and data loss prevention
  • Database optimization to monitor and improve database performance
  • Non-procedural access for non-technical users requiring access
  • Procedural language interface for programming language configuration
  • Application development to configure user input policies

Types of DBMS

Hierarchical Network Relational (RDBMS) Object oriented
A tree system where all data is represented by parent-child relationships. Like hierarchical, but this system can have multiple parents, creating many data paths. The most implemented system; normalizes the data and organizes it logically in independent tables. Considered for object oriented coding languages; work with complex data objects.

DBMS software and tools

Inform your decision for the DBMS with our guide to Best software and database systems.

Maria H. Underwood