MySQL vs MS SQL vs PL/SQL: which is the best database?

In this article, we will talk about the different relational database management systems, and their comparison. RDBMS or RDB is how the term is generally known as it is a common database type that stores data in tables. This data would be used in relation with other datasets. 

Since most databases are relational databases, the term has stuck. Businesses mostly use relational databases, and not the flat file or hierarchical database of previous times. Several of the IT projects are managed on relational DBMS since they can handle multitudes of data and complex queries. Since the data is stored in several tables, and the tables themselves were divided into rows and the term ‘relations’ was used. The tables in the relational database can be linked in different ways. 

This also means that the cord can be related to other records, resulting in new relations. This whole setup makes the relational databases efficient, flexible, and the most effective way to store information. Any application can pull this data easily. Any changes in database record would be easily updated and automatically refreshed. 

RDBMS use structured queries language for executing queries, and these are performed with the help of SQL commands. The commands are different for storing new data, modifying them, performing searching, retrieving data, and responding to user’s input. 

Let’s discuss the different RDBMS, a comparison


MySQL is an open source RDBMS developed by MySQL AB, and is different from Oracle and Microsoft SQL Server. 

The name My in MY SQL comes from one of the co-founders, Michael Widenius’s daughter and SQL stands for Structured Query Language. It is written in C and C++ languages, supports Linux, Solaris, macOS, Windows and FreeBSD operating systems.  The database language is free and open source software GPLv2 and also under different proprietary licenses. 

Primary Database model: Relational DBMS

Secondary Database Models: Document store and Spatial DBMS

Developer: Oracle

DB Engines Ranking: Score is 1219.77; In Ranking: #2 in Overall and #2 in Relational DBMS

Initial release: 1995

License: Open Source

Current release: 8.0.27, October 2021


Microsoft SQL Server is a relational database management system by Microsoft. The primary role of the database server is storing and retrieving data as requested by applications. These software applications may run on the same computer or other computers. MSSQL is available in different versions – Enterprise Standard and Express versions.

Primary Database model: Relational DBMS

Secondary Database Models: Document store, Graph DBMS, and Spatial DBMS

Developer: Microsoft

DB Engines Ranking: Score is 97-; In Ranking: #3 in Overall and #3 in Relational DBMS

Initial release: 1989

License: Proprietary software

Current release: SQL Server, November 2019


PL SQL is a relational database system designed to eliminate the errors in manual database management. It is cross-functional hence runs on various operating systems, is free to use for students, but paid for commercial purposes. It is scalable, portable, distributed and programmable and handle bug amounts of data 

Primary Database model: Relational DBMS

Secondary Database Models: Document store, Graph DBMS, RDF store and Spatial DBMS

Developer: Oracle

DB Engines Ranking: Score is 1270.35; In Ranking: #1 in Overall and #1 in Relational DBMS

Initial release: 1980

License: Commercial

Current release: 19c, February 2019

All the three databases use SQL or Structured Query Language, SQL Server uses T-SQL developed by Sybase, an extension of SQL and Oracle uses PL/SQL Procedural Programming Language.

The differences of these relational databases lie in their syntaxes and capabilities. The way they handle stored procedures, built-in functions and variables are also different. 

What’s the same in all the three?


Since they are all relational databases, all three use the database table model in columns and rows for storing data.

Using foreign keys

All the platforms use foreign keys to establish relationships between tables.

High performance

Using any of these relational databases would be good for your app because both are capable of storing and returning data, making the applications that you create highly performant. 


Both are highly scalable, and hence suitable for small and big project. Both can handle millions of transactions every day. 

What’s different?

The differences start at the beginning itself. Let’s check them out:

Both MySQL and MSSQL are widely used enterprise database systems. While MySQL is an open -source relational database management system, MSSQL Server is a Microsoft-developed RDBMS, so here is a performance comparison between the two. 

A factor worth mentioning here the transaction control, and how that is different in SQL Server and Oracle. In SQL server, the instructions are commented and executed individually, it is not possible to roll back them if any errors happen. 

Native Compatibility

MySQL can run smoothly on various operating systems like Linux, Mac OS C and Windows. On the other hand, SQL Server was initially developed exclusively for Windows operating systems. However, Microsoft recently made the RDBMS work on both Linux and Mac OS X, but that’s not enough because users cannot make use of certain capabilities. Oracle is compatible with other editions.


There is support for several multiple programming languages including PHP, Ruby, Python, Delphi, Visual Basic, Go, R, Java, C++ etc. MySQL goes a step further and supports additional languages like Perl, Eiffel, Haskel, Tcl, Scheme and Perl. 

Both can be used for Windows and Linux.  

For easy integration, MySQL works natively with PHP and MSSQL for Windows.

MSSQL also has support and technical assistance.

MSSQL specifies different engines

With MSSQL, there is no need to specify different engines while creating the database, but there are engine configurations for MySQL. The developer can perform design and programming activities because of this feature. 

The cost factor

Cost is always the pressing problem for every company looking for software purchasing solutions. Because the expense could happen with an enterprise grade database. With MySQL and SQL, there is a free tier, fortunately.

Just a little input into the difference between SQL and MySQL

SQL is a Structured Query Language that can manage relational databases.

MySQL is a relational database management system that stores, retrieves, modifies and administers databases using SQL. MySQL, SQL Server, Oracle and Informix are just a few of the database softwares that’s available in the market. 

SQL has no updates as it is a query language.

MySQL is a database software, and uses SQL as a language to query databases. There will be frequent updates since it is a software. 


If you are not sure which RDBMS to choose, get in touch with the right partner and vendor and you will be steered in the right direction. After all, there is no way in which you can compromise on the security and disaster recovery aspects. 

These relational databases can easily run high performance workloads, but the SQL server is the much better option when it comes to supreme performance in workloads. As for cloud support, the databases have a comprehensive range of cloud support solutions.

Interesting Links:

Which Relational Database is Right for You?

A Quick Comparison of Oracle, SQL Server, and MySQL

Pictures: Canva

The author: Sascha Thattil works at which is a part of the YUHIRO Group. YUHIRO is a German-Indian enterprise which provides programmers to IT companies, agencies and IT departments.

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