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PostgreSQL vs MySQL Comparison – Performance, Syntax, Security, etc.

PostgreSQL and MySQL are two popular open source database management systems (DBMS) available to application developers around the world.

But there’s often an on going PostgreSQL vs MySQL database across different online and offline forums as to which DBMS is better.

PostgreSQL vs MySQL

In this post, we’re going to discuss PostgreSQL vs MySQL and hopefully provide you with the necessary information to get a better understanding of both database management systems, their advantages as well as disadvantages to better make your own conclusions.

1. PostgreSQL

PostgreSQL vs MySQL Comparison

Now let’s dive into the topic of PostgreSQL vs MySQL. First of all, PostgreSQL is an advanced open source ORDBMS (Object Relational Database Management System) that aims at being extensible and SQL standards compliant as its core tenents. It’s highly programmable as such extendible and supports object-oriented and relational database functionality unlike MySQL.

Some of PostgreSQL advantages are:

  • Solid implementation of the standard SQL specifications
  • Provides support for advanced SQL capabilities such as common table expressions and windows functions
  • PL/pgSQL which is its procedural programming language interacts very well with SQL
  • Its support for advanced data types such as multi-dimensional arrays, user-definied types, etc gives it an edge over MySQL
  • If you are used to Oracle or MS SQL Server performance optimization mechanisms, PostgreSQL is your go to choice of DBMS
  • In addition to ODBC, JDBC, ADO.NET access methods, PostgreSQL can also be accessed via the platform’s native C library
  • Its ability to handle complex tasks through stored procedures is definitely a plus when compared to MySQL
  • PostgreSQL has an edge when it comes to keeping and maintaining data integrity

On the contrary, there are some drawbacks such as:

  • When it comes to popularity, it’s no way near MySQL. As such, this is makes it hard to learn and support given its low community support base PostgreSQL vs MySQL
  • Its replication implementation is not are refined as that of MySQL
  • PostresSQL lacks when it comes to heavy read options when compared to MySQL
  • Given its lack of popularity, it’s hard to find service providers or web hosts that support it thus not as cost-effective as MySQL
  • PostgreSQL can be a bit challenging setting up as a result of its lack of large support community as MySQL

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2. MySQL

PostgreSQL vs MySQL Comparison

On the other hand, MySQL is the most popular of all open source databases. It’s rich in features, open source and powers millions of websites and web applications around the world. It’s relatively easy to learn, use and has a huge global support community and information online.

When it comes to PostgreSQL vs MySQL, some of MySQL advantages are:

  • It is rich in features and supports a lot of SQL specifications
  • It’s definitely cheaper and easily available due to wide support among service providers and web hosts
  • MySQL is fast and works efficiently thus can handle a lot of data and scale appropriately when needed. No wonder why large websites and applications such as Facebook use it
  • It implements its proprietary partitioning technology called MySQL Cluster when performing horizontal clustering
  • Uses master-master approach when it comes to replication, however can perform master-slave replication where a single node controls data other other slave nodes
  • Access methods such as ODBC, JDBC, ADO.NET are available for accessing MySQL
  • It comes built-in with a lot of security features to ensure data protection
  • Another major plus for MySQL is its ease of setup. Whether you’re running it as a standalone or in clusters – it provides better support and documentation

However, some drawbacks people have complained about includes but not limited to:

  • Unlike PostgreSQL, MySQL does not support advanced SQL capabilities such as windows functions
  • There is not explicit support for partial indexes but this is normally accomplished by implementing a layer between the database and app
  • Some functionalities such as references, transactions, auditing, etc. renders a little bit inefficiently as obtained from other database management systems PostgreSQL vs MySQL
  • MySQL is limited in its ability to handle complex data transformation
  • It has higher risk of data loss and corruption – but this isn’t major and can be mitigated by keeping regular backups and/or replication

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Final Thoughts

We hope this post has given a better insights into the differences between PostgreSQL and MySQL databases. Please feel free to leave your comments below and tell us your experiences with either or both database management systems. Cheers.

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