There are a lot of RDBMS out there. It would be nice to assume that any one is perfect for or can be adapted to any situation, but that simply isn’t true. Each has its strengths and its weaknesses.

When I am doing initial research on a database project, there are a few properties I will look into and questions I will ask to determine what is the best fit for that project.

  • Pricing
  • Vendor product support
  • Size limit
  • Number of users
  • Security mechanisms
  • Backups
  • Export/import tools
  • Business intelligence tools
  • Front-end options
  • Operating system
  • Other hardware/resources required

I’ve gathered this information for the following RDBMS:

  • Microsoft Access
  • Microsoft SQL Server
  • SQL Azure
  • MySQL
  • PostgreSQL

Having this information at my fingertips, able to be presented to a client or a project manager I’m working with, has been invaluable. I hope this reference can be of value to you too!

Cheatsheet: RDBMS Comparison