Lecture 1

Limitations of File-Based System
Separation and isolation of data When data is isolated in separate files, it is more difficult to retrieve the appropriate data. E.g. there is the need retrieve data from both the mkt. dept and the sales dept.

Duplication of data This is wasteful as it costs time and money to enter data more than once. It takes up additional storage space and hence associated with cost. Data may be inconsistent thus leading to loss of data integrity.

Data dependence Since the structure and storage of data files and records are defined in the application code, changes to an existing structure are difficult to make. E.g. to modify the size of a field in a file requires a one-off program to convert the file to the new format. E.g. the maximum size of textbox from 50 to 255 in application.

Incompatible file formats Since the structure of files are embedded in application programs, the structures are dependent on the programming language used. Thus, the structure of files generated by different application programs may be different, making them difficult to be processed jointly. A software would be required to convert the files to some format common. This is time-consuming and expensive.

Fixed queries Such systems are dependent on the application developer who is responsible to write queries and reports. Thus the type of query or report that can be produced is fixed. Unplanned queries are not possible.

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Application Developers. A recovery control system which restores the database to a previous consistent state following a hardware or software failure. the database approach attempts to eliminate redundancy by integrating files and hence keeping a single copy of each data. End-Users ADVANTAGES: Control of data redundancy In contrast to traditional file-based systems that waste space by storing the same information in more than one file. A user-accessible catalogue which contains descriptions of the data in the database. People Database Administrators. not eliminating redundancy entirely.BCA Lecture 1 DBMS Other Facilities A security system which prevents unauthorised access to the database. Software . it controls the amount of redundancy inherent in the database. Components of the DBMS Environment Hardware . to a network of computers.Ranging from a single PC to a single mainframe.The DBMS software. the operating system… Data . Although.The most important component acting as a bridge between the machine components and the user components. An integrity system which maintains the consistency of stored data. Data consistency Page 2 of 6 .Refers to the instructions and rules governing the design and use of the database. Database Designers. Procedures . A concurrency control system which allows shared access of the database. the application programs.

e. it may be possible to derive additional information from the same data. is expressed in terms of constraints (consistency rules) that the database is not allowed to violate. i. Improved security Database security is the protection of the database from unauthorised users. Enforcement of standards Integration allows the definition and enforcement of necessary standards. standards for data formats to facilitate exchange of data between systems. Page 3 of 6 . update or delete. More information from the same amount of data With the integration of operational data. documentation standards. Improved data integrity Database integrity. The new applications can also rely on the functions of the DBMS.g. retrieval.g. naming conventions. e. validity and consistency of stored data. The type of access allowed may also be controlled.BCA Lecture 1 Since a data item is stored only once in the database any update to its value needs to be done only once and the new value is immediately available to every users. insert. It may be through users names and passwords as an identification method. e. users from a department may have access to data of other departments which was previously not shared. such as data definition and manipulation and concurrency and recovery control. Sharing of data New applications can build on existing data in the database being shared among all authorised users and add only data that is not currently stored rather than having to define all the data requirements again. rather than having to provide these functions themselves.g.e.

the DBMS provides all the lower level file-handling routines that are typical in application programs. This is known as data independence. Increased concurrency DBMSs manage concurrent database access and ensure that there is no loss of information or loss of integrity. possibly resulting in a lower total cost leading to an economy of scale. Many DBMSs provide query languages or report writers that allow users to ask ad hoc questions and obtain the required information almost immediately. Page 4 of 6 . At a basic level. Improved maintenance through data independence DBMS. The DBA can make decisions about design and operational use of the database to provide an optimum use of resources and hence performance. in contrast to file-based systems separate data description from the applications thus making the applications immune to changes in the data descriptions. This allows programmers to concentrate on specific functionalities required by users. Improved data accessibility and responsiveness Since the database is shared. The budget that would normally be allocated to each departments can be combined. data is directly accessible to users. Balance of conflicting requirements Each user or department may have conflicting needs.BCA Lecture 1 Economy of scale All operational data being combined into one database and a set of applications created to work on this one source results in cost savings. Increased productivity The DBMS provide many of the standard functions that would have to be written by a programmer in a file-based system.

Size The complexity and breadth of functionality makes the DBMS an extremely large piece of software occupying huge amount of disk space and requiring substantial amount of memory to run efficiently. Also a larger or dedicated machine may be required to run the DBMS to achieve the required performance. DBMSs provide facilities to minimise loss following a failure. Cost of conversion Cost of converting existing applications to run on the new DBMS and hardware may be significant. nightly backup of data may be used to protect data from failures to the computer system or application program. This may include the cost of training staff to use the new system or employing specialist staff to help convert and run the new system. Cost of DBMSs The cost varies significantly depending on the environment and functionality provided. DISADVANTAGES: Complexity Providing the functionality expected of a good DBMS makes the DBMS an extremely complex piece of software. Performance Page 5 of 6 . The DBMS also needs to be maintained.BCA Lecture 1 Improved backup and recovery services In file-base systems. Additional hardware costs Additional storage may be required for the DBMS and database.

Page 6 of 6 . the DBMS is written to cater for many applications. Some applications may thus not run as fast as they used to. Since all users and applications rely on the availability of the DBMS. Higher impact of a failure Centralisation of resources increases the vulnerability of the system.BCA Lecture 1 Unlike file-based systems. failure of any component can bring operation to a halt.

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