What's your free/open source database of choice?

Which database is your favorite and why? Please comment below and provide real examples from production solutions. There are so many to choose from now… MySQL, PostgreSQL, FirebirdSQL, MaxDB, SQLlite, Derby, Ingres, Prevayler… Which one do you trust with your data? Which one do you enjoy developing for? What features do you wish it had? Are there any features only found in Oracle, DB2, Sybase, or Microsoft SQL Server that you would like to see in a F/OSS RDBMS suite?

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0 Responses to What's your free/open source database of choice?

  1. Linuxman says:

    I prefer FirebirdSQL myself. One big advantage is that you can move the .GDB files between platforms and not have to reimport your data. I have used FirebirdSQL on GNU/Linux, Windows, and Solaris from PHP, ASP, and JSP. It is consistent across platforms and had better support for the SQL ’92 standard than other popular databases. It has native interfaces to PHP and a fully JCA level 3 JDBC driver as well as ODBC support and a C API. FirebirdSQL is fork of Interbase, a product that goes way back to 1984. The one thing it lacked when I started using it was SMP support when run in server mode (which doesn’t apply when run in applcation mode). With a loyal development community the engine has been improved and rewritten in C++ and dozens of tools have been written for most platforms for management, query desgn, replication, etc. I also supports features like constraints, triggers, transactions, subqueries, joins, and stored procedures which PostgreSQL and MySQL did not have or implement fully. I tried PostgreSQL and MySQL and while PostgreSQL had better features and SQL compilance, until recently it did not run on Windows. Also, while MySQL lacks quite a few of the features I am used to from MS SQL Server, Sybase, and even Access (yes Access supports more SQL ’92 syntax than MySQL), MySQL runs on all the platforms I need to support: GNU/Linux, Windows, Solaris, SCO Openserver and it is well documented in the books I have in my library. MySQL and PHP have been a natural marriage on all platforms, and for small to medium projects they offer very low TCO and have all the features need for 75% of the projects. Because of some third party proprietary applications, I am also forced to support MS SQL Server and Sybase SQLAnywhere. Both have great features sets, SQL compliance, and scale very well, and I would recommend them more if they were Free/Open Source Software and also less costly in terms of licensing. Finally, I plan to take a good look at Ingres, the grandfather of all RDBMS’s which was recently released under a BSD-like license, to compare it to the others. Prevayler also interests me for fast embedded projects where I can just store objects and don’t need to use SQL, but I would love to have a C++ version, (it uses Java) if only I had time to write it.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I don’t have much experience with other databases. MySQL is the database we’ve used here for more than 5 years without problem. It’s easy to set up and there’s tons of tools available for maintenance and backup. Lately I’ve heard good things about PostgreSQL, in fact people have been arguing about it’s superiority. I think I’ll stick with MySQL though until I see a need to switch.