Why is PostgreSQL Ideal for Enterprise Database Environments?

Published in AGEDB , 3 min read, Jun 6

In the fast-changing world of software, more and more people are choosing open-source over traditional, paid-for database systems. Now, whether it's for running websites, storing big data, or powering cloud services, open-source is everywhere. This shift is making it tough for the usual paid databases to keep up, as open-source tech is taking over almost every area of computing.

Among the giants of proprietary DBMS is Oracle, known for its hefty licensing fees and complex migration processes, stirring up discussions and a growing trend among domestic companies to break free from Oracle's grip. The exorbitant maintenance costs inevitably lead to increased manufacturing costs, burdening the end consumers.

In response to this situation, there has been a growing interest in open source products in the database market. Notably, in the database management system market, there is an increasing trend towards databases based on PostgreSQL.

Through this article, we aim to introduce our graph database, and the relational database, AgensSQL, which are based on PostgreSQL, and inform why businesses should choose an open source option like PostgreSQL among various databases.

PostgreSQL: The Hidden Gem of Open Source DBMS

PostgreSQL is one of the world's most popular relational database management systems, ranking fourth in terms of DB engines behind Oracle, MySQL, and MS SQL, but it has been growing at an impressive rate over the years, closing the gap on the top three. It supports a wide range of programming languages and applications, making it a particularly loyal and popular choice among developers, and it has a very active open source community. There is also a steady stream of conferences and seminars held around the world

There are many reasons why many DB users choose to use open source software like PostgreSQL.

Why do organizations choose open source software?

1. Cost savings

Cost savings is the most important and biggest advantage for businesses. Open source software is free to use, just like freeware software. What makes it even better is that the source code is publicly available, allowing you to make your own improvements or modifications to the software, which in turn reduces development costs. In fact, open source is so free to download, modify, and redistribute that the initial development cost is said to be half that of developing new software.

2. Fast and flexible development

Open source communities operate by sharing the latest technical information and solutions to problems from a wide range of users, technology tends to evolve faster than proprietary programs. High quality open source software is often developed that is superior to closed source programs, especially when developers and users are aligned.

3. Compatibility/Flexibility

Open source often uses open formats or open protocols, which makes it easy for different software to work together. It also allows interworking between different platforms, and it is not locked to a specific device, operating system, or application. This is a great advantage in the ubiquitous era of multiple devices connected together over a network.

4. Reliability/Stability

Because so many developers and experts from around the world are involved in the development of open source, it is more stable than proprietary programs that are developed behind closed doors. However, this is only true for programs that have a large number of developers actively involved, so you need to look carefully at the reputation and development of the open source in question.

PostgreSQL: Beyond Just a Database, A Commitment to Quality and Community

People who use PostgreSQL are generally known to have high levels of affection and loyalty towards the product. This is because, compared to other products, PostgreSQL is equipped with features and performance that are second to none, and it provides favorable conditions for new developers to get started. The presence of PostgreSQL is further supported by manuals, documents, related books, and various seminars and conferences held in different countries. This can be seen as a result of vibrant community activities.

However, having an active community is not everything. The key characteristics of PostgreSQL, as identified by actual users, include:

1. Supports the most SQL features

With the longest history of development, PostgreSQL supports the most SQL of any relational database.

2. Supports for the most SQL standards

SQL: 2016, or ISO/IEC 9075:2016, is the eighth revision of the ISO and ANSI standards for the SQL database query language, and was officially adopted in December 2016.

PostgreSQL supports about 95% of the SQL standard, 170 out of a total of 179 items.

3. Rich data type support

The data types supported by PostgreSQL, including some NoSQL, are available as distinct extensions :

  • Key-Value
  • Graph (ex: Apache AGE)
  • Columnar Store

4. Programming Language Support

PostgreSQL supports the following languages:

Server-side language: C/C++, PL/pgSQL, PL/Tcl, PL/Perl, PL/Python, PL/Ruby

External language: PL/Java, PL/Lua, PL/R, PL/sh, PL/v8

5. Bulk Data Processing

PostgreSQL is capable of processing large amounts of data thanks to the following features :

Table Partitioning

Parallel query & multiple processes

Analytic & aggregate functions

Indexing & JOIN

PostgreSQL has one of the most popular open source extensions, PostGIS, which is a middleware-like extension that conforms to the OpenGIS specification( and supports geographic objects.

Oracle and MS SQL also have commercial GIS products, but they are not as well-received in terms of cost versus performance, and there are benchmarks available online that show PostGIS performance is comparable to Oracle.

PostgreSQL has also gotten a lot of buzz in the cloud space. As more companies offer DB as a Service (DbaaS), the demand for PostgreSQL has increased due to its cost and licensing advantages.

It is important to have a data environment where various data can be collected and stored, and where various stakeholders can analyze and check the status at any time, and cloud DBMS makes it easy to build an environment where various data types, large and growing data, and data from other places can be collected and linked.

Key Considerations for Businesses When Adopting PostgreSQL

Despite the advantages, there are several factors businesses must consider when adopting an open source database. Firstly, PostgreSQL is a community DBMS, which may not align with the enterprise data environment or lack certain functionalities needed for business operations.

In such cases, it should be developed to suit the intended purpose and environment. Additionally, considerations typically include whether support is available in emergency situations, the robustness of security, and the availability of ongoing technical support.

If a company has experts proficient in PostgreSQL, it might be feasible to directly download and use PostgreSQL for free. However, to take advantage of the benefits mentioned for choosing this open source software, it is necessary to have experience with the open source DB and to find a database manufacturer that can provide maintenance and technical support.

Key Factors to Consider When Implementing PostgreSQL

Migration Convenience: Schema conversion, SQL compatibility, SF/SP conversion, data migration

Data Security: Encryption, access control

Scalability: Inter-DB data linkage support, Scale-out response

Technical Support: Construction experience, technical support personnel composition, availability of manufacturer-level technical support


As we've seen, the landscape of database management systems is rapidly changing, with open-source solutions like PostgreSQL leading the charge. This shift towards open-source isn't just about saving costs; it's about embracing flexibility, speed, and a community-driven approach to innovation.

For businesses pondering the leap from proprietary systems to open-source databases, PostgreSQL offers a compelling blend of advanced features, robust support, and unparalleled growth potential.

Whether you're a small startup or a large enterprise, the transition to an open-source database like PostgreSQL is not just a smart choice — it's a strategic investment in the future of your data infrastructure.

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