Difference Between Database and Database Management System (DBMS)

Difference Between Database and Database Management System (DBMS)

Difference Between Database and Database Management System (DBMS)

Do you wonder – what is the difference between Database and Database Management System (DBMS)?

Are they both the same or different?

I talk with many computer science students and programmers. One of the biggest myths circulating among students is, that database and database management systems are the same.

Since my early days when I started learning computer science to date, I learned that this has been one of the biggest misconceptions.

But, they are far different from each other. And you will understand it after giving a complete read to this article.

In this post, I am going to give detailed insight into the difference between database and database management system.

What is a Database?

The database includes actual data you save.

The database is any collection of data whether you are writing it on paper or storing it in a digital format.

There are two types of databases…

  • Online Transaction Processing (OLTP)
  • Online Analysis Processing (OLAP)

OLTP stores the current data and it is used for the transaction. Usually, it is stored in a Megabyte (MB) or Gigabyte (GB) of space.

Whereas, OLAP stores historical data which is used for data analysis. Data can be in Terabyte or Petabyte of size.

In a relational database, the structure of the table also belongs to the database. It is also called a Schema of the database.

To access data from the database, users need a database management system.

What is a Database Management System (DBMS)?

The database contains data in a well-structured format.

DBMS is a kind of software that helps you to retrieve, edit, and store structured data in the database.

In the case of a relational database, related data are stored in multiple tables. Each table has data stored in rows and columns. These tables are connected using a foreign key in the database.

To retrieve this data from the database and process it, you need a data processing unit. This unit is called Query Processing Software. It is part of a database management system.

The data in the database is stored in a well-formatted structure. It’s not that easy to manage and store the data. You need Storage Management Software.

Overall, the query processing software and storage management software belong to the database management system. And it has the main role of managing data inside the database in the most secure and efficient way.

DBMS is also responsible for data transactions. To adhere to the reliability of the database, DBMS follows ACID Properties (Explained with examples).

Difference Between Database and Database Management System

The very well-known database management systems are MySQL, MS SQL Server, Oracle…

You might have got a clear view of the database and its management system.

What is the difference between Database and Database Management System?

So, let’s take an example. It makes it easy to understand.

In day-to-day life, if I say, you use the database and manage it. How come?

The data you write on paper is a database. And the pen and your handwriting technique area database management system.

Since ancient times, we have evolved so far to store data in digital format instead of writing it on paper. Now, we can access data anywhere and anytime.

We can also save the data in any text file, called a file system. But, DBMS is preferable to use, rather than the file system. There are so many Advantages of Database Management Systems over File Systems.

What is a Database System?

Database and database management system, combined forms a Database System.

In other words, both the database and database management system are the parts of the Database System (DS).

Why is it important to learn Database Systems?

You might know the importance of data and so the database management. Whether it is big data, IoT, data analytics, Machine Learning, or Artificial Intelligence, data is a crucial entity. With the growth of big data, there is a huge scope of career opportunities in the database management system.

If you have any doubt regarding the difference between database and database management system, feel free to write in a comment. I would like to get your views and discuss the comparison between DB and DBMS.


  1. Love the simplified explanation. It brought out the conceptual difference to me very clearly. Thank you!

    1. You’re welcome, Samhita! I’m so glad as I helped you through this article. I hope you enjoy going through other articles also. 🙂 Kindly share your feedback about other articles. Good Day!

  2. I have understood clearly that what is DB and DBMS and the difference between but I have a little bit of confusion. I have read somewhere that MySQL, SQLite, etc are DB and somewhere else I read as a DBMS. What is the correct answer? DB or DBMS?

  3. Now I have gotten a clear understanding of the difference between database and database management systems. Thank you so much 🙏

  4. Very Informative Article.

    Sir pls can you write an article, what all skills are needed (from basic to advance) to be a DATA ANALYST.
    And what all topics in STATISTICS are required in data analytics.

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