Database management is a method of coordinating the information that supports a business’s operations. It involves storing data, distributing it to application programs and users making changes as needed, monitoring changes in the data and preventing it from getting damaged by unexpected failures. It is an integral part of the informational infrastructure of a business that assists in decision making, corporate growth, and compliance with laws like the GDPR and the California Consumer Privacy Act.

The first database systems were developed in the 1960s by Charles Bachman, IBM and others. They developed into information management systems (IMS) which allowed large amounts of data to be stored and retrieved for a variety of purposes. From calculating inventory, to supporting complex financial accounting functions as well as human resource functions.

A database is a set of tables that store data according to a certain arrangement, like one-to-many relationships. It utilizes primary keys to identify records and allows cross-references between tables. Each table is comprised of a variety of fields, also known as attributes, that represent facts about the entities that comprise the data. Relational models, invented by E. F. “TedCodd Codd in the 1970s at IBM and IBM, are the most used database type currently. This design is based on normalizing data to make it more user-friendly. It is also simpler to update data because it doesn’t require changing several databases.

Most DBMSs can support multiple types of databases and offer different internal and external levels of organization. The internal level is focused on the cost, scalability, and other operational issues like the physical layout of the database. The external level is how the database appears in user interfaces and other applications. It could comprise a combination of various external views (based on the various data models) and can also include virtual tables that are computed from generic data in order to improve performance.