What is a Database Management System?

A Database Management System (DBMS) is a piece of software that efficiently collects, stores and processes information.

Essentially it is a database overlayed with a user interface that makes it accessible to any level of end user.

Data is stored and processed to be in its most efficient form in the database then presented and modified via the user interface.

The user interface makes adding or modifying information as efficient as possible, reducing repetition and increasing accuracy.

The system can also automatically generate useful insights and statistics.

An Online Database Management System

Having the Database Management System online opens up some useful possibilities:

  • Becomes accessible anywhere, anytime to internet connected devices.
  • Interfaces can be developed that harness the power of various web technologies.
  • Data becomes available to existing applications that can be 'plugged' into data sources, such as iCal calendar files and RSS information feeds.
  • Different interfaces can be provided that best suit the device it is being used on.
  • Offload a lot of the work involved with backups and security.

The system can really open up how you work when your information becomes so available.

Is this the same as a Web Database or a Database that is online?

Not necessarily - All Database Management Systems are Databases but not all Databases are Database Management Systems.

A Database doesn't require a user interface layer, this doesn't make them less effective but it greatly increases the learning curve.

When we say user interface layer, we mean custom forms and views that are friendlier than the raw table views.

A Web Database or a Database that is online could just mean that you are able to work with the Database System in a rawer form from your browser.

A good example of this is PhpMyAdmin.

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