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SQL server hosting: how do you pick the right SQL server for your specific needs?

The relative merits of MS SQL, MySQL, and MariaDB

What is an SQL server?

An SQL server is a database server installed on an SQL database management system. It supports the standardized structured query language (SQL) that is used to control the required database operations. SQL comes in a variety of “dialects,” including MySQL, MSSQL, and MariaDB, which each have different functions.

  • MS SQL for database analysis

    MS SQL is the business intelligence solution for your organization.

  • MySQL for dynamic websites

    Open source, so it’s free. Backed by a strong developer community.

  • MariaDB: Future-proof and open source

    Inexpensive, with a raft of additional features

MS SQL for companies with the IONOS Cloud

MS SQL by Microsoft provides you with a business intelligence platform for your enterprise—a central data repository with comprehensive analysis, reporting, and management tools.
Use the benefits of MS SQL to run your critical databases with optimized performance. The IONOS Cloud gives you the choice of MS SQL 2016 or MS SQL 2017.

MySQL for websites—also with dedicated servers from IONOS

MySQL is an open source version of the most commonly used database management systems for dynamic websites. Most standard CMS, web shops, and forums are based on MySQL, often combined with PHP.

MariaDB: MySQL fork with important extensions—in the IONOS Managed Cloud

MariaDB originally evolved as a MySQL fork. Although closely related and largely compatible, MariaDB now scores points with security features, high availability, interoperability, and better performance. Once viewed as the “little sister,” it is now immensely popular and is increasingly replacing MySQL as the database standard. MariaDB is available as open source software and as a paid enterprise version.

Summary: rent SQL server variants to benefit from their specific merits

The individual database management systems each have their particular strengths, depending on your requirements:

  • MS SQL is the right system for you if you want to analyze large datasets directly in the database.

  • MySQL is the better choice for dynamic websites. It’s open source, so you do not incur any license fees, and it’s being continuously developed by the community.

  • MariaDB is open source as well and therefore offers the same financial benefits. As a viable database application with promising additional features, MariaDB may eventually end up replacing MySQL.