MySQL, NoSQL, and NuoDB

I’ve been keen on MySQL ever since I first started using it heavily more than a decade ago.  In fact, I liked it well enough to include it as one of the four main database platforms, over and above the ANSI-ISO SQL standard, in my popular book SQL in a Nutshell. However, with the advent of NoSQL data platforms in the last few years, the waters have been muddied.  It’s no longer a quick easy decision as to which database platform you should use, both because there are many new platforms to choose from and because the old, easy choices aren’t as cut and dried as they used to be.  MySQL, for example, is now owned by Oracle which definitely complicates the decision, at least in terms of the mainstream commercial versions of that product, while the brain-trust that started MySQL has gone on to the alternative database platform called MariaDB.

Rather than dive straight into the alternative next-gen of MySQL, I decided to investigate more powerful alternatives that offer more of the benefits of NoSQL and cloud-centric databases.  That’s when I landed on NuoDB.  It’s has been generally available for a few months now as a straight database platform.  It didn’t have any real Microsoft-oriented features until recently.  Then last month the company announced a bunch of Microsoft enhancements, many which are great for developers, so I downloaded it.  (You might have seen my tweets from that time when I first started to check it out).

From their website:

  • 64 bit support for Windows Server, Windows 7 and 8 for high performance
  • Full support for Visual Studio 2012, LINQ and Entity Framework for a more integrated developer experience
  • Azure compatibility for running/deploying NuoDB easily in the cloud

Now it’s possible to build and deploy .NET applications using standard Microsoft tools and frameworks against a back-end that has built-in scale up elasticity.  In other words, it gives you some of the best features of some of the NoSQL platforms while also giving you some of the best features of Azure.  If you are interested in trying it out, there are 2 free version available for download here.   And definitely let me know what you think. As you probably know, I’m not a hard-code .NET developer.  So I’m interested in hearing from professional developers about its capabilities.

I’ll write up some observations in future blogs.

And, as always, thanks!

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  1. NuoDB is doing some pretty cool stuff…. but so are a ton of other projects:

    If you are tired of MySQL (which is still incredibly popular), don’t forget that MariaDB is pretty much a drop in replacement for it, outside of Oracle and kind of viewed as mysql done the right way.

    “scale up elasticity” do you mean “scale out elasticity” … or is that splitting too many hairs 😉

  2. Hi Rob, Hadn’t seen that db-engines ranking website. Thanks for that!

    And yes, I meant scale-out instead of scale-up. Doh! Good catch.


  3. NuoDB is doing very cool stuff (and yes others are as well), but what makes us uniquely different is our patented, distributed architecture. There is no other NewSQL solution on the market that allows you to create a single (virtual) database across machine hosts in your datacenter, in the cloud, or across clouds with a few mouse clicks. NuoDB offers that at linear scale-out performance and low-latency, and guarantees zero downtime.

    More and more modern database apps are having NuoDB on their short-list of databases to evaluate.

  4. Kevin – This is pure blasphemy and if they should strip you of your MVP status for writing this blog.

    Just kidding…mostly…

  5. Good stuff, Michael. Do you have a URL pointing to the linear scale-out capabilities.

    Mike, I know you’re just kidding. Of course, MVPs get a lot of their status not strictly for being champions and evangelists for Microsoft. Rather, it’s from supporting the Microsoft community. In my case, a big part of my value-add as an MVP is being an apologist for the heterogeneous enterprise, in which we have a mishmash of Oracle, DB2 UDB, MySQL, PostgreSQL, NoSQL, and on and on. By far my most popular book, SQL in a Nutshell, covers not only the ANSI SQL standard, but also Oracle, Microsoft SQL Server, MySQL, and PostgreSQL.

    Enterprises are rarely homogeneous in terms of their IT architecture, platforms, and infrastructure. And they’re sometimes the least catered to by MVPs because MVPs self-censor in order to maximize consulting opportunities on the Microsoft stack. Since my background is much more in the Fortune 500 arena and I’m not a consultant (although I do some side consulting), I try to be an advocate for those members of the community who live in a world of heterogeneous IT systems.

    To be honest, I’m very thankful that Microsoft is tolerant of this approach!

    Does all of that make sense?

  6. The corp/marketing speak…drowning.

  7. One thing people often forget is that question, is my data important? If it is, why are you considering using free solutions like mySQL (yes, I know there are paid, supported versions).

  8. Lewis,

    I’m trying to parse your statement – are you saying that open source databases are not reliable and that paid for solutions are always reliable… or are you just strictly commenting on versions of mySQL?

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