Database management is a system for managing the data that supports a company’s business operations. It includes data storage and distribution to application programs and users, modifying it as necessary and monitoring the changes in the data and preventing the data from becoming corrupted by unexpected failure. It’s a component of a company’s total informational infrastructure which aids in decision making and growth of the company as well as compliance with laws like the GDPR and the California Consumer Privacy Act.

The first database systems were invented in the 1960s by Charles Bachman, IBM and others. They evolved into information management systems (IMS) that made it possible to store and retrieve huge amounts of information for a range of uses, from calculating inventory to supporting complex human resources and financial accounting functions.

A database is a set of tables that arrange data in accordance with the specific scheme, for example one-to many relationships. It makes use of primary keys to identify records and allow cross-references between tables. Each table is comprised of a variety of fields, known as attributes, that represent facts about the entities that comprise the data. The most well-known kind of database is a relational model, created by E. F. “Ted” Codd at IBM in the 1970s. This design is based on normalizing data to make it more user-friendly. It is also easier to update data because it doesn’t require changing many sections of the databases.

Most DBMSs can support multiple types of databases and offer different internal and external levels of organization. The internal level concerns cost, scalability, and other operational issues like the physical layout of the database. The external level is the representation of the database in user interfaces and applications. It could include a mix of different external views based on different data models. It also may also include virtual tables that are calculated using generic data in order to improve the performance.