SQL VS NoSQL: Top 10 Head-to-Head Comparisons
April 8, 2022
Are you confused while choosing the modern database? Or don't know whether SQL or NoSQL; which one to choose? SQL refers to a decades-old database but is still ubiquitous and effectively being used by Analysts, Engineers, data scientists, and IT decision-makers. However, the increasing volumes of unstructured data, process chunks of data, and the need for storage availability spark interest in different technologies such as NoSQL.
The big giants like Microsoft, Dell, Accenture, and Cognizant use SQL databases, while on the other hand, companies like Amazon, Adobe, Google, and Netflix use NoSQL. Now, you might be curious to understand the key differences between SQL and NoSQL. First, let's dive into the software world of understanding SQL and NoSQL from the absolute beginning.
What is Structured Query language (SQL)?
Some of the relational database examples which use SQL are:
Microsoft SQL server
Microsoft office Access
Google Cloud SQL
What is Non- SQL or Not only SQL (NoSQL)?
It is a non-tabular and non-relational database with specific data models such as document, key-value, and graph formats to create modern applications. It is used for distributed data that requires a large stack of storage needs and can effectively store structured, unstructured, semi-structured, and polymorphic data.
Some of the common NoSQL database examples are:
- Amazon's Dynamo DB
- Apache's CouchDB
- Oracle NoSQL
- Apache's Cassandra DB
10 head to head Comparisons of SQL and NoSQL
It can be used for data
- Retrieval of data
It can be used for the maintenance and retrieval of different types of data
||Rigid Schema (structured data)
||Flexible Schema (unstructured data)
||SQL Data structures
|NoSQL Data structures
- Wide Column
||Vertically scaled( add big servers)
||Horizontally scaled(add more servers)
|Ideal use cases
||It is well-suited for
- Complex queries
- Multi-row transactions
- Dynamic queries
- Legacy systems that built around the relational structure
|It is well suited for
Scalable queries due to changing environments
- Unstructured data or document
- Real-time data
- Cloud computing
- Agile business
- Non-complex queries
||Require powerful hardware to foster vertical scaling
||Requires commodity hardware to foster horizontal scaling
||Follow ACID (atomicity, consistency, isolation, and durability) properties
||Follow BASE (basic availability, soft-state, and eventual consistency)
||Features of SQL
- Cross-platform support
- Multi-level Security
|Features of NoSQL
- High performance
|Normalization & Joins
||Normalization & joins are required
||Denormalization & joins are not required
After the astounding comparisons, let’s come to the SQL vs NoSQL pros and cons.
Reality check- SQL vs NoSQL pros and cons
When looking for a data management system for your enterprises, you should consider the SQL vs NoSQL scalability, performance, schema, architecture, database transactions, and more.
Here is the SQL vs NoSQL pros and cons-
Pros of SQL
The SQL databases have a simple structure that can be efficiently managed with simple SQL queries and doesn't require challenging architectural efforts.
2. Data security
Don't you think it is great to get high data security? Yes, it is possible with the SQL database because it stores the data in the form of tables which has restricted permission to confidential information.
3. Lowered data storage footprint
The lower data storage footprint is due to the optimization and normalization opportunities, resulting in enhanced database performance.
Cons of SQL
1. Performance issues
When a large amount of data in a database and multiple users are logged in simultaneously, it might decrease the query response time.
2. Limited horizontal scalability
The SQL database can only be skilled vertically; hence it isn't easy to scale horizontally, slowing down the distributed database performance.
3. Cost factor
SQL database can include a high cost for its maintenance and development. In addition, it requires a team of experts to maintain it, which also inhibits an additional cost.
Pros of NoSQL
NoSQL is generally built to deliver a high performance than SQL. Hence, some NoSQL databases provide impressive data processing speed.
Did you know NoSQL databases are designed to handle large data sets? Therefore, they can be horizontally scaled to lodge more data requiring less maintaining low costs.
Thanks to the non-rigid structure of the NoSQL database, that can combine and store any type of data.
Cons of NoSQL
1. Data analysis challenges
Most business and data scientists traditionally choose SQL due to its great data analysis potential, while with a NoSQL database, even the simplest queries need a certain level of expertise.
2. Lack of support
It doesn't have a vast community compared to SQL because it was introduced a few years ago. Therefore, it is unable to provide strong support, and it becomes difficult to resolve undocumented issues.
3. Issues with consistency
It shows consistency issues while handling a large amount of data and doesn't comprise with data redundancy mechanism. Hence, at the places where consistency issues can be acceptable, like shopping carts being updated and social media posts being alive, NoSQL can be used. Moreover, NoSQL is good in offering exceptional speed and availability rather than consistency.
Also Read: Monolithic vs Microservices Architecture
Who is the real winner- SQL or NoSQL?
What do you think is the real winner, SQL or NoSQL? Most people think that NoSQL is the clear-cut leader, but that's not certainly true. Many myths and misconceptions are running around, but both have their own advantages, and you need to decide after considering the SQL Vs NoSQL pros and cons and make a smart decision that fits your business needs.
When SQL and NoSQL can be used?
SQL and NoSQL can be used based on the business needs and requirements-
1. For a massively distributed system, consider using the Scylla, a distributed NoSQL wide-column store.
2. If the goal is a vertically scaled database, the go-to option will be an SQL database.
3. If the input data is relatively challenging to encapsulate and is heterogeneous, NoSQL is the best option.
4. Is ACID compliance your priority? Look no further than SQL databases.
5. If the temporary data needs to be stored like session data, wish lists, and shopping carts, you can choose NoSQL.
6. Do you wish to analyze behavioral-related and customized sessions? Prefer SQL database.
Final Thought: SQL vs NoSQL
The databases SQL and NoSQL have their own importance, and it profoundly depends on your business requirement and objectives. One of the biggest factors in understanding which database is the better choice depends on the type of data that needs to be stored. If you are still confused about which database to use.
Here is the heck:
SQL database is the preferred option if you are handling structured data that doesn't change much over time.
You can consider a NoSQL database if you handle a large chunk of data with little structure. If you are searching for the best software development company in USA that provides an efficient and streamlined database management solution for your enterprise, check out here.
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