SQL & Popular Enterprise Database Management Systems

What is SQL?

In today’s increasingly digital world, nearly every business has an online presence and must store information in a database. The ability to access, extract, and manipulate this data for analysis to arrive at data-driven decisions is crucial in taking your business to the next level.

Structured Query Language (SQL) is a programming language that allows users to communicate with databases via a Relational Database Management System (RDBMS). Relational databases store data in tabular form. Relationships between tables are defined using keys.

Common enterprise relational database management systems include:

  • MySQL
  • SQL Server
  • Oracle
  • DB2
  • Snowflake

Let’s explore some of the major pros and cons of each. 


Pros: One of the biggest advantages of MySQL is that it is free to use. It is also open-source and thus customizable to the specific needs of users. 

Cons: MySQL alone is not efficient in handling large amounts of data.

Microsoft SQL Server

Pros: Developed by Microsoft, SQL Server comes with various services that allow users to connect databases to tools such as Power BI without the need to purchase third party software. 

Cons: Enterprise edition is costly, likely to exceed the budget of many businesses. In terms of use, it is difficult to rollback changes made to the database in the case of an error. 


Pros: Oracle is known for their database security, preventing disclosure of confidential data. It also allows for rollback in the transaction process.

Cons: Although Oracle offers a wide variety of features, these typically require additional costs. 


Pros: Db2’s Blu Acceleration allows for greater efficiency when handling large datasets by storing data in column-organized tables as opposed to rows.

Cons: Cost is high, may exceed the price many businesses are willing to pay.


Pros: This cloud-based service separates storage services from compute services and bills on a per-second basis, typically reducing costs for users.

Cons: Snowflake does not enforce any data constraints. Therefore, businesses may unknowingly exceed their budget.