Difference Between Traditional File System And Database System

In this post, we will see some comaprison between traditional file system and database system. We will see how traditional file system differs from database system. Later on, we will see the disadvantages of database system.

Data has always been very crucial since long, before digitization the data was stored on hard copies such as pages. Before computers were even introduced banking and insurance companies stored customer data on pages. One of the major risks is the loss of data due to natural calamities like fire, flood etc. Also it is very tedious and time consuming to search for data specific to a customer.

In this modern age there are various mechanisms to store data, File System and DBMS are amongst all the methods available out there. But DBMS is most preferred as compare to File System.

Let us discuss below each point in details on the advantages of a DBMS over a File system. While we conclude we will also discuss the disadvantages of DBMS as opposed to the numerous advantages it provides.

  • Reduction of Redundancies

    Since through DBMS we can have centralized control over data by the database administrators, it avoids unnecessary duplication of data and effectively reduces the total amount of data storage required. It also eliminates the extra processing necessary to trace the required data in a large mass of data.
    Another advantage of avoiding duplication is the elimination of inconsistent data that tend to be present in redundant data files.

  • Shared Data

    A database allows the sharing of data under its control by any number of application programs or users. The data can be accessed by various applications as per their business use. For example, our Aadhar card data can be used by multiple applications as per their business use. Bank might use your biometric data for cash withdrawal, may be some other genuine user can use it for registering to some government schemes.

  • Data format

    In files system approach, the data is scattered in various formats because of which retrieval of data is very difficult. In DBMS, due to centralized system, the format of similar type of data remains same.

  • Integrity

    Since we have centralized control, we can also ensure that adequate checks are incorporated in the DBMS to provide data integrity. Data integrity means that the data contained in the database is both accurate and consistent.

  • Security

    Data of the user or client have always been very important and vital to the organization as well as the individual to which the data belongs. There can be huge loss of the sensitive data of the organizations systems are compromised, hence DBMS provides adequate security. Database administrators who has the ultimate responsibility for the data in the DBMS can ensure that proper access are given to the right individuals and the right procedures are followed for accesses. This includes proper authentication schemes for access to the DBMS and additional checks before permitting access to sensitive data.

    If you consider investment banking sector, it would not be wise or appropriate to share sensitive data such as sensitive stock related data to all the database users. Access should only be given to authorized users.

    Regulators from Investment banking and Insurance domains ensure that data is not compromised or else organization may be fined with huge amount.

  • Conflict Resolution

    Since the database is under the control of the administrator, he or she should resolve the conflicting requirements of various users and applications. Additionally DBA should choose the best file structure and access method to get optimal performance for the response critical applications while permitting less critical applications to continue to use the database with a slower response.

  • Recovery

    In case of DBMS, we can back up the data daily or whenever we want so that in case of database crash or deletion of data by any user, we can recover the data from the last backup. This is not possible with the files system.

Above are all the advantages the database management system provides as opposed to File system. We cannot control the data present in the file system from the above factors.
Since we have discussed so much on the advantages of DBMS, let’s also see what are the disadvantages.

Disadvantages of DBMS

A significant disadvantage of DBMS system is cost. In addition to the cost of purchasing or developing the software the hardware has to be upgraded to allow for the extensive programs and the work spaces required for their execution and storage.

There is also an overhead to implement security integrity and sharing of the data which causes a degradation of the response and throughput times.

While centralization reduces duplication, the lack of duplication requires that the database be adequately backed up so that in the case of failure the data can be recovered. Centralization also means that data is accessible from a single source i.e. the database. This increases the potential severity of security breaches and disruption of the operation of the organization because of downtimes and failures.

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