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Ten years of DB-Engines.com

von Matthias Gelbmann, Paul Andlinger, 13. Oktober 2022
Tags: DB-Engines Ranking

DB-Engines.com was launched ten year ago. Quite a few things have changed since then in our portal and in the DBMS industry.

The first DB-Engines Ranking from October 2012 listed 18 database management systems. Ten years later, the latest ranking shows 397 systems. Of course, more than 18 systems existed in 2012, our initial ranking only focused on the major competitors, and it grew to 200 systems within a year. Nevertheless, the DBMS landscape has expanded significantly in these ten years. 157 of the systems in our latest ranking (that is 39.5%) did not exist in 2012.

Obviously, the DBMS world today has significantly changed, but if we compare these two rankings, it is remarkably stable at the top. Oracle has never lost its number one position, although the gap in the ranking score is closing. MySQL and Microsoft SQL Server always ranked as #2 and #3, changing these positions a few times. 8 of the top 10 systems from 2012 are still in the top 10 today. Only Cassandra (now at rank #11) and Memcached (now #32) droped out. They have been replaced by Redis and Elasticsearch. MariaDB and Snowflake are in a good position to enter the top 10 in the near future.

Beside the growing number of systems in the ranking, we see another development: the top 8 systems in today's ranking are all classified as multi-model. We did not have a multi-model classification ten years ago, simply because that did not seem necessary back then. In the meantime, many DBMS providers have extended their scope by supporting a variety of models. One typical example is Redis, which started as a pure key value store, and now supports time series, spacial data and graphs, and can be used as a search engine. Despite this trend of the top systems to cover more use cases, there will always be room for highly specialized systems, providing solid solutions for a niche.

Relational DBMS are still the main data model category, both in terms of number of systems (41% of the systems support that data model) and popularity (71% of popularity scores). However, all the other categories show higher growth rates, with Graph DBMS and Time Series DBMS being the biggest winners in the last 10 years.

Six of the systems have been awarded our prestigious DBMS of the Year award, given to the system with the highest gain in popularity in a given year: PostgreSQL (3 times), MongoDB (2 times), Oracle, Microsoft SQL Server, MySQL and Snowflake. The next award is due beginning of 2023, and you can see how the competitors are doing so far in the current ranking table.

We would like to use this oportunity to say thank you to our partners in the DBMS industry. Many of the providers use our services to show relevant information to our visitors in our detailed product pages, or as featured products, third party products or sponsors. That cooperation enables us to continue maintaining and developing that portal for many years to come.

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