In this chapter, we looked at the second component to our web applications: databases. We covered some of the ground material helpful to know before diving in and using them in the next chapter. By now, we should have a better understanding of what databases and database management systems are, why we would want to use them instead of just writing our own code libraries to manipulate data, and what major systems are available. Hopefully, we have also impressed upon you the need to spend some time doing research when choosing a database server; initial purchase cost is rarely the entire story to acquiring one, and many considerations must go into making the final decision.
In the next chapter, we will start getting our hands dirty and learn how to create databases and tables in MySQL and Oracle, including thinking about how we should structure our data. We will then look at user management and security, showing how to control whom we give permission to use our data.