In the world of databases, there are many different tools used to access and store data. Two of the most popular options used today are SQL and MySQL. If you have ever wondered what the difference between SQL and MySQL is, then this article is for you. Here, I will take an in-depth look into the differences between the two, including a table that outlines the key features of each. So, if you want to know more about these two powerful databases, read on.
You Can Also Read: Difference Between Data Science and Data Analytics
Basic and SQL-Related Concepts
Before digging into the main topic, you might also want to know about some basic topics. They are given as follows.
What is a Database?
A database is a collection of data that is organized in a specific way so that it can be accessed, modified, and updated in an efficient manner. Databases come in various varieties, including relational databases, object-oriented databases, and NoSQL databases.
Databases are used by businesses and organizations to store information about their customers, products, employees, etc. They are also used by government agencies to store information about citizens, tax records, etc. In addition, databases are used by schools and universities to store student information, grades, class schedules, etc.
- Relational Databases are organized into tables, which consist of rows (records) and columns (fields). Each row represents a distinct/unique record, and each column represents a specific aspect of that record.
- Object-oriented Databases are organized around objects, which are self-contained pieces of data that include both the data itself and the methods that operate on that data.
- NoSQL Databases are designed to handle large volumes of data that are distributed across a large number of servers and are often used for big data and real-time web applications.
Overall, the main purpose of a database is to store and manage data in a way that is efficient, secure, and easy to access.
What is Open Source?
Open source software is software whose source code is freely available to the public, allowing anybody to examine, edit, and distribute it. This is in contrast to proprietary software, where the source code is not publicly available and is typically owned by a company or individual.
Open-source software is often developed by a community of volunteers, who work together to improve the software and share their modifications with others. Many people believe that open-source software is superior to proprietary software because it allows for greater transparency, collaboration, and innovation.
What is SQL?
SQL is a standard database query language that enables users to manipulate and query data stored in relational databases. SQL is used to select, insert, update, and delete data from databases. It can be used to create views, stored procedures, and triggers. SQL is not a programming language.
Moreover, it is a language that helps to communicate with databases. It is the standard language for relational database management systems. SQL commands are used to perform tasks such as updating data on a database or retrieving data from a database.
SQL can also help to create reports and perform data analysis. It is an important tool for managing data in a relational database management system (RDBMS).
Five Features of SQL
Here are five features of SQL:
- Data Definition Language (DDL): SQL includes commands for defining and modifying the structure of database objects in the database. Examples include creating, altering, and dropping.
- Data Manipulation Language (DML): SQL includes commands for inserting, updating, and deleting data in the database. Examples include inserting, updating, and deleting.
- Data Query Language (DQL): SQL includes commands for querying and retrieving data from the database. The most frequently used command is select.
- Transaction Control: SQL includes commands for controlling transactions, which are units of work that are completed in the database. Examples include committing and rollback.
- Data Control Language (DCL): SQL includes commands for controlling access to the data in the database. Examples include grant and revoke.
How to Master SQL – A Brief Guide
Here is a brief guide on how to master SQL:
- Understand the basics of SQL: syntax, data types, operators, etc.
- Learn how to use the various SQL commands: SELECT, INSERT, UPDATE, DELETE, etc.
- Practice writing SQL queries on a regular basis. Try to solve complex queries that you come across in your work or online.
- Stay up-to-date with the latest features of SQL by reading books or articles, or attending conferences or webinars.
- Keep track of your progress by doing projects or joining an online course. This will help you stay motivated and ensure that you are mastering the subject.
- Take practice tests or certification exams to measure your progress in SQL and also to recognize your accomplishments.
Here are some reputed sources to learn from:
What is MySQL?
MySQL is a relational database management system (RDBMS) that runs as a server providing multi-user access to a number of databases. It is written in C, Python, and C++. MySQL uses SQL (Structured Query Language).
Moreover, MySQL provides a wide range of features including data storage, data manipulation and control, user management, security, stored procedures, and triggers. It also supports a variety of storage engines and provides compatibility with many different programming languages. MySQL is often used in web applications due to its speed and reliability.
Five Features of MySQL
Here are five features of MySQL:
- Open Source: MySQL is an open-source database management system, which means that it is freely available for anyone to use and modify.
- Cross-Platform Compatibility: MySQL can be installed on a diversity of operating systems, Windows, including Linux, and macOS.
- Scalability and Performance: MySQL is designed to handle large volumes of data and can scale up to meet the demands of a growing business.
- High Availability: MySQL includes features for ensuring the availability of the database, such as replication and clustering.
- Connectivity: MySQL supports a wide range of programming languages and it can integrate with other applications and systems.
How do I Start learning MySQL?
Assuming that you are starting from scratch, here are brief instructions on how to learn MySQL in 5 steps.
- Step 1: Install MySQL. You can download MySQL from the official website. After downloading, you should be able to see a ‘Welcome to the MySQL Monitor’ message.
- Step 2: Create a database. In order to start using MySQL, you need to create a database first. You can do this by typing ‘create database [database name];’ in the MySQL Monitor. For example, if you want to create a database for storing information about your website’s visitors, you would type ‘create database visitor_info;’
- Step 3: Create tables and fields in the database. Once the database is created, you need to create tables and fields in it so that you can store data in it. For our example of the visitor_info database, we might want to create a table called ‘visitors’ with fields for name, email address, and date of visit. We can do this by typing ‘create table visitors (name varchar(255), email varchar(255), date);’
- Step 4: Insert data into the database tables. Now that we have created a table for our visitor_info database, we can insert data into it using the ‘insert into ’ command. For example, if we wanted to add the visitor’s name, email address, and date of visit to our table, we would type ‘insert into visitors (name, email, date) values (‘John Smith’, ‘email@example.com’, ‘2011-01-10’);’
- Step 5: Query the database. Once data has been inserted into the database tables, you can query it using the ‘select’ command. For example, if we wanted to find the names of all visitors who visited our website on January 10th, 2011, we would type ‘select name from visitors where date = ‘2011-01-10”;
These are just a few basic steps for learning MySQL. If you want to learn more about MySQL and become an expert in it, there are plenty of great online resources available such as tutorials and video courses. Some three popular sources are:
SQL Vs MySQL(Comparison Table)
The following table shows how SQL and MySQL differs on the basis of different factors.
10 Key Differences Between SQL and MySQL
There are several key differences between SQL and MySQL, which are outlined in the table below.
- SQL (Structured Query Language) refers to a standard programming language for managing and manipulating databases. MySQL is a reputed open-source implementation of SQL that is utilized to manage and store data in databases.
- Secondly, SQL is a standard query language, while MySQL is a relational database management system.
- SQL is a declarative language, which means that you specify what you want to achieve, and the database system figures out how to do it. MySQL, on the other hand, is a more imperative language, which means that you have to specify how to do things in more detail.
- SQL is used to create, modify, and query databases. MySQL provides additional functionality for managing users and permissions, as well as for tuning the performance of the database.
- While SQL is a programming language that is used to communicate with databases, MySQL is a database management system that uses SQL as its primary language for managing and manipulating data stored in databases.
- SQL is used to query, insert, update, and delete data from databases, while MySQL is used to store data in databases.
- SQL can be used on any platform. In contrast, MySQL can only be used on Windows, Linux, and Unix platforms.
- SQL is not case-sensitive, while MySQL is case-sensitive.
- SQL is a procedural language, while MySQL is object-oriented.
- Finally, SQL does not support triggers and stored procedures, while MySQL does.
In conclusion, the distinctions between SQL and MySQL are very clear. While both are Relational Database Management Systems, they have some key distinctions that make them unique from each other. SQL is a query language used to manage data stored in a relational database, while MySQL is an open-source RDBMS that stores data in tables and allows users to manipulate it with SQL commands.
It’s worth noting that MySQL is just one example of a database management system that uses SQL. There are many other database systems that use SQL, such as Microsoft SQL Server, Oracle, and PostgreSQL.
Ultimately, the choice of which one to use depends on your individual needs and preferences as both offer different features and capabilities that can benefit you in various ways.