Difference Between File System and DBMS

Key Difference Between File System and DBMS

  • A file system is software that manages and organizes the files in a storage medium, whereas a DBMS is a software application that is used for accessing, creating, and managing databases.
  • The file system doesn’t have a crash recovery mechanism; on the other hand, the DBMS provides a crash recovery mechanism.
  • Data inconsistency is higher in the file system. On the contrary, data inconsistency is low in a database management system.
  • File system does not provide support for complicated transactions, while in the DBMS system, it is easy to implement complicated transactions using SQL.
  • File system does not offer concurrency, whereas the DBMS provides a concurrency facility.

Difference Between File System and DBMS
Difference Between File System and DBMS

Here, I have analyzed the difference between the file system and the DBMS and will comprehensively evaluate their pros and cons.

What is a File system?

A file system is a technique of arranging files in a storage medium like a hard disk, pen drive, DVD, etc. It helps you organize the data and allows easy retrieval of files when they are required. It mostly consists of different types of files, like mp3, mp4, txt, doc, etc., that are grouped into directories.

A file system enables you to handle the process of reading and writing data to the storage medium. It is directly installed into the computer with operating systems such as Windows and Linux.

What is DBMS?

Database Management System (DBMS) is software for storing and retrieving user’s data while considering appropriate security measures. It consists of a group of programs that manipulate the Database. The DBMS accepts the request for data from an application and instructs the DBMS engine to provide the specific data. In large systems, a DBMS helps users and other third-party software store and retrieve data.

Difference between File System and DBMS

Here, I will detail the differences between the file system and DBMS based on my own professional encounters.

File System vs DBMS CISC
File System vs DBMS
Parameter File System DBMS
Structure A file system is software that manages and organizes the files in a storage medium. It controls how data is stored and retrieved. DBMS, or Database Management System, is a software application. It is used for accessing, creating, and managing databases.
Data Abstraction The file system provides the details of data representation and storage of data. DBMS gives an abstract view of data that hides the details
Data Independence Storing and retrieving data can’t be done efficiently in a file system. DBMS is efficient to use as there are a wide variety of methods to store and retrieve data.
Crash Recovery The file system doesn’t have a crash recovery mechanisms. DBMS provides a crash recovery mechanism
Security Constraints Protecting a file system is very difficult. DBMS offers good protection mechanisms.
Data Redundancy In a file management system, the redundancy of data is greater. The redundancy of data is low in the DBMS system.
Inconsistency Data inconsistency is higher in the file system. Data inconsistency is low in a database management system.
Security The file system offers less security. Database Management System offers high security.
Integrity Constraints File System allows you to store the data as isolated data files and entities. Database Management System stores data as well as defined constraints and interrelations.
Complexity Not provide support for complicated transactions. Easy to implement complicated transactions.
Sharing The centralization process is hard in File Management System. Centralization is easy to achieve in the DBMS system.
Backup and Recovery It doesn’t offer backup or recovery of data if it is lost. DBMS system provides backup and recovery of data even if it is lost.
Query Processing There is no efficient query processing in the file system. You can easily query data in a database using the SQL language.
Concurrency These systems don’t offer concurrency. DBMS system provides a concurrency facility.

Features of a File System

As I’ve observed, here are some important elements of the file system:

  • It helps you store data in a group of files.
  • Files data are dependent on each other.
  • C/C++ and COBOL languages were used to design the files.
  • Shared File System Support
  • Fast File System Recovery.

Features of a DBMS (Database Management System)

In my view, here are the essential features of a DBMS:

  • A user-accessible catalog of data
  • Transaction support
  • Concurrency control with recovery services
  • Authorization services
  • The value of data is the same at all places.
  • Offers support for data communication
  • Independent utility services
  • Allows multiple users to share a file at the same time

Advantages of File system

Here are the pros of the file system from my experience:

  • Enforcement of development and maintenance standards.
  • Helps you to reduce redundancy.
  • Avoid inconsistency across file maintenance to get the integrity of data independence.
  • Firm a theoretical foundation (for the relational model).
  • It is more efficient and costs less than a DBMS in certain situations.
  • The design of file processing is simpler than the Database.

Advantages of DBMS system

In our experience, these are the benefits of the DBMS system:

  • DBMS offers a variety of techniques to store & retrieve data
  • Uniform administration procedures for data
  • Application programmers are never exposed to the details of data representation and storage.
  • A DBMS uses various powerful functions to store and retrieve data efficiently.
  • Offers Data Integrity and Security
  • The DBMS implies integrity constraints to get a high level of protection against prohibited access to data.
  • Reduced Application Development Time
  • Consume less space
  • Reduction of redundancy.
  • Data independence.

Application of File system

In my practice, I often focus on this important application of the file system:

  • Language-specific run-time libraries
  • API programs use it to make requests to the file system
  • It is used for data transfer and positioning.
  • Helps you to update the metadata
  • Managing directories.

Application of the DBMS system

In the projects I’ve handled, here are the important applications of the DBMS system:

  • Admission System, Examination System, Library System.
  • Payroll & Personnel Management System.
  • Accounting System, Hotel Reservation System, Airline Reservation System.
  • It is used in the banking system for customer information, account activation, payments, deposits, loans, etc.
  • Use airlines for reservations and schedules.
  • DBMS system also used by universities to keep call records, monthly bills, maintain balances, etc.
  • Finance for storing information about stock, sales, and purchases of financial instruments like stocks and bonds.

Disadvantages of File system

Here, let me share the cons of the file system:

  • Each application has its own data file, so the same data may have to be recorded and stored many times.
  • Data dependence in the file processing system is data-dependent, but the problem is that it is incompatible with the file format.
  • Limited data sharing.
  • The problem is with security.
  • Time-consuming.
  • It allows you to maintain the record of the big firm having a large number of items.
  • Required lots of labor work to do.

Disadvantages of the DBMS system

From what I’ve observed, here are some drawbacks of the DBMS system:

  • Cost of hardware and software for a DBMS is quite high, which increases the budget of your organization.
  • Most database management systems are often complex systems, so training for users to use the DBMS is required.
  • The use of the same program at a time by many users sometimes leads to the loss of some data.
  • DBMS can’t perform sophisticated calculations.
  • Data sets begin to grow as they provide a more predictable query response time.
  • It required a processor with a high speed for data processing.
  • The Database can fail because of a power failure or because the whole system stops.
  • The cost of a DBMS depends on the environment, function, or recurrent annual maintenance cost.

How to Choose Between a File System and a DBMS

Having implemented both systems, I can assert that for any organization looking to enhance data accessibility and reduce inconsistency, investing in a DBMS is a wise decision over traditional file systems because of its advanced features like crash recovery and concurrency support.