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Advantages of databases

The facilities offered by DBMS vary a great deal, depending on their level of sophistication. In general, however, a good DBMS should provide the following advantages over alternative systems:

Advantage Description
Data independence Both the database and the user program can be altered independently of each other thus saving time and money which would be required to retain consistency.
Multi-user access Many user views may be supported by a single logically consistent structure so that communications delays and transmission errors can be eliminated.
Data integration Data redundancy is eliminated by storing data in a single place.
Data integrity Structural errors are eliminated by the definition and enforcement of rules about the kind of data that is allowed and what can be done with it.
Enforcement of standards With central control of the database, the DBA can ensure that standards are followed in the representation of data. These may be internal to an organisation, or may be required by external legislation, for example.
Security Having control over the database the DBA can ensure that access to the database is through proper channels and can define the access rights of any user to any data items or defined subset of the database. The security system can prevent corruption of the existing data either accidently or maliciously.
Performance Data from different sources within an organisation can be combined on demand. The physical operation of the database can be optimised by the DBA.