2019 Database Trends — SQL vs. NoSQL, Top Databases, Single vs. Multiple Database Use

Wondering which databases are trending in 2019? We asked hundreds of developers, engineers, software architects, dev teams, and IT leaders at DeveloperWeek to discover the current NoSQL vs. SQL usage, most popular databases, important metrics to track, and their most time-consuming database management tasks. Get the latest insights on MySQL, MongoDB, PostgreSQL, Redis, and many others to see which database management systems are most favored this year.


SQL Databases

NoSQL Databases

SQL has had a large lead over the non-relational alternatives for decades, but NoSQL is quickly closing the gap with popular databases such as MongoDB, Redis, and Cassandra. Though many organizations are choosing to migrate from legacy databases, such as Oracle, not all are moving to NoSQL way. Based on our findings, SQL still holds 60% with rising demand for systems such as PostgreSQL:

SQL Database Use: 60.48%

NoSQL Database Use: 39.52%

Most Popular Databases

While these numbers might shock, there’s no mistaking the rise in popularity of MySQL, MongoDB, and PostgreSQL. So how does this survey compare to best-known source for database management system trends? DB-Engines Ranking — Trend Popularity report places these leaders in the top 5, but Oracle keeps hold at number one and Microsoft SQL Server at number 3.

While we expected to see a much higher presence of Oracle database users, their representation was low at the world’s largest developer expo.

Single Database vs. Multi-Database Use

SQL & NoSQL Multiple Database Combinations

SQL + NoSQL Database Use: 75.6%

SQL + SQL Database Use: 14.6%

NoSQL + NoSQL Database Use: 9.8%

Most Popular Multiple Database Type Combinations

The clear winner with over 1/3 of multiple database type use is the combination of MySQL and MongoDB. While MongoDB is often considered an alternative to MySQL, the two databases do work well together when properly designed. The second most popular combination was MySQL and PostgreSQL together. These two SQL databases are clear competitors, but can be jointly used to store different data sets. As you can see in the above section graph, the 9.76% representation of MySQL and PostgreSQL comprises a large majority of the SQL + SQL use in multiple databases.

MySQL + MongoDB: 34.15%

MySQL + PostgreSQL: 9.76%

MongoDB + PostgreSQL: 7.32%

MongoDB + Redis: 7.32%

MySQL + MongoDB + PostgreSQL: 4.88%

MySQL + MongoDB + PostgreSQL + Redis: 4.88%

Most Time-Consuming Database Management Task

Monitoring came in at number one with 12.6% from our respondents, barely breaking ahead of backups, managing disk space, scaling, and joining tables who all tied for number two with 11.6% each. Standalone at number three was maintaining and redistributing changes between views and stored programs at 8.7%, and again a tie at number 4 with 7.2% for each cleaning and database setup. Upgrades came in at number five with 6.5%, and a dozen other tasks made up the 11.6% Other category, including migrations, queries, comparing, tuning, and replication.

Most Important Metric Tracked For Database Performance

Query response time was not only the most tracked metric, but also the majority with 51.8% of responses! We expected this to lead as it came in at 30.8% from a Most Time-Consuming PostgreSQL Management Task report we compiled in October of 2018, but significantly increased when we expanded this question to all database management systems. Query speed is an extremely important metric to track on a continuous basis so you can identify slow-running queries that could be affecting your application performance. Many DBA’s use a Slow Query Analyzer tool to identify problem queries, see which sort of query it is associated with, understand their queries by time range, and find the top queries causing read-load in your system to identify those queries that are not indexed.

Coming in at number two was reliability with 18.2% from our respondents. Needless to say, while outages are less common than slow queries, if your databases goes down, it will have the most serious impact on your performance. That’s why it’s critically important to implement a high availability framework for your production deployments to keep your databases online if there’s an outage in one of your datacenters.

Memory then came in at number three with 8.2% of responses. The more memory you have available, the better your database should perform. Both understanding and monitoring memory usage should be high on your list, as insufficient or exhausted memory will cause your database to read and write data to your disk which is dramatically slower.

Thanks to the hundreds of participants who contributed to the cloud database trends report at DeveloperWeek 2019! We are excited to share these insights, and hope to hear your thoughts below in our comments.