Face-off: PostgreSQL vs. MySQL

Developers and programmers have different responses regarding the issue of whether PostgreSQL trumps MySQL, although the former is starting to make quite a name for itself.

“PostgreSQL is a powerful, open source object-relational database system,” said PostgreSQL. “It has more than 15 years of active development and a proven architecture that has earned it a strong reputation for reliability, data integrity, and correctness.”

PostgreSQL focuses on overall traditional features for RDMS applications, while MySQL is more concerned on faster performance for web-based applications that typically form part of a LAMP model.

“The MySQL database has become the world’s most popular open source database because of its high performance, high reliability and ease of use,” said MySQL. “It is also the database of choice for a new generation of applications built on the LAMP stack (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP / Perl / Python.).”

When to Use PostgreSQL?

If you want to create complex database designs, PostgreSQL is highly recommended. This system features foreign key references, triggers, and views. It is closer to ANSI SQL standards, which allows developers use complex SQL commands.

The rich functionality of PostgreSQL allows developers to use procedural languages on the server, do transactions, and create complex sets of business rules.

“Another extension to PostgreSQL is the ability to have many different types of stored procedure languages,” said Jim Mlodgenski the Chief Architect at EnterpriseDB, in a recent E-Week post.

“This allows developers to build server-side code using the best language for their needs.  For example, a trigger that needs to perform complex text processing can be written in Perl in order to utilize its strong regular expression functionality.”

If you want to move away from Oracle and MSSQL and create different table types, PostgreSQL should serve your needs well.

When to Use MySQL?

On the other hand, MySQL is known for its simplicity and high performance. The downside of PostgreSQL is the slow performance due to heavyweight set of features. If you are planning to create a web-based app and performance is a concern, MySQL would be a good choice.

MySQL is designed to work well with web-based servers.

“One of the greatest strengths of MySQL is its pluggable storage engines,” said Mlodgenski.

“MyISAM, the default storage engine of MySQL, provides the performance for read-mostly environments, and the InnoDB storage engine provides the transaction robustness necessary for write-intensive applications.”


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About Jake Neeley

Jake Neeley is a content marketing and social media geek who loves reading, outdoor sports (especially those in Utah mountains), and time with his family. Connect with Jake on Google+, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

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