View Categories

A Look at SQLite (And How It Could Benefit You)

  • Apr 21, 2020
  • 0
  • by Brad Litwin

When determining which database management platform you’ll use, it pays to be thorough in your research. After all, a poor choice could make it difficult to optimize this part of your site or carry out other key maintenance tasks.

That’s where SQLite comes into play. It’s a public-domain Relational Database Management System, (RDBMS), which means it’s free to use. It’s also lightweight, user-friendly, and cross-platform, not to mention efficient when it comes to loading the data you need.

In this article, we’ll introduce you to SQLite. Then, we’ll discuss three of the benefits of using it. Let’s dive in!

An Introduction to SQLite

SQL, or Structured Query Language, is a language principally used in programming. Specifically, it enables you to access and manage all the data stored in a tabular RDBMS.

SQLite itself is an RDBMS. It’s also in the public domain, meaning that you can use its code freely both commercially and privately. This ensures you have no legal restrictions in respect to how you utilize, modify, or even distribute the platform:

The SQLite homepage.

Unlike client/server SQL options, such as MySQL, SQLite is optimized for economy and simplicity and requires significantly less configuration. In that context, it is not intended to compete with client/server solutions.

Instead, it is more focused on delivering local data storage and can be an effective choice for small and medium-sized websites. Moreover, it’s a popular database engine for a variety of platforms, such as embedded systems (along the lines of those used in smartphones), Operating Systems (OSs), and browsers.

How SQLite Could Benefit You (3 Key Ways)

As we’ve already discussed, SQLite can be an excellent choice for a variety of applications, including small and medium-sized websites. However, you may still be curious about some of its features. Let’s take a look at three of them.

1. It Can Improve Performance

SQLite got its name for a reason. It’s a lightweight and self-contained RDBMS packaged into a very small footprint.

In fact, it’s file-based and serverless. Other RDBMSs, such as MySQL, require a separate server to actually function, also known as client/server architecture.

Indeed, depending on the system you install it on, SQLite may only take up about 600KB of space. As it’s also self-contained, you don’t have to deal with installing any dependencies for it to work.

Even SQLite databases themselves are modest in nature. The objects that make them up – including tables, schema, and indexes – are centralized in just one OS file.

All this can equate to solid performance, not to mention high levels of reliability and overall stability. In particular, SQLite can run up to 10–20 times faster than PostgreSQL, and twice as fast as MySQL. The difference is most noticeable for low load websites.

2. Setup and Administration Are Easy

From the get-go, SQLite has zero configuration and no minimum requirements. It doesn’t include configuration files and is serverless.

That means it doesn’t have any type of installation process. In essence, you only need to download the requisite SQLite Libraries to start building your database. Even that equates to a small footprint that doesn’t place a significant strain on your computer’s memory.

Furthermore, SQLite is transactional. This enables you to easily roll back edits in the event of a program crash, or if an edit is otherwise not successful.

With a rollback, SQLite will return to the version of your database that existed before those edits were made. You can be confident that your changes won’t result in irreversible damage.

Through its emphasis on simplicity, SQLite also offers easy administration. Ultimately, that may mean you don’t have to rely on a Database Administrator (DBA) to keep it running effectively.

3. SQLite Is Versatile and Portable

When it comes to software, it can pay to have a platform that offers versatility. As a database engine, SQLite provides broad cross-platform functionality and portability.

In particular, you are able to copy and transfer between 32 and 64-bit OSs, as well as between big and little-endian architecture. Essentially, SQLite can run and be compiled on a variety of systems, including Windows, Linux, and Mac OS.

Moreover, since a SQLite database is stored in only a single file rather than a collection of separate ones, it is significantly more flexible in terms of its portability. This further broadens the range of computing systems it can encompass.

Taking the Next Step With SQLite

Your next step may be to find a hosting option for you to start leveraging SQLite. After all, you’ll likely benefit from a provider that can deliver speeds and uptime needed to make the most of the advantages of your RDBMS.

Still, it’s important to know exactly what your specific requirements are. Even with SQLite’s performance and speed, especially for low load websites, you might still be looking for a host to supplement its features.

At A2 Hosting, we provide our customers with unlimited SQLite databases, and the platform comes pre-installed on our Linux Managed servers:

The A2 Hosting SQLite hosting pricing table.

Moreover, we offer several guarantees in terms of speed, storage, and uptime.

Conclusion

If you’re looking for a portable, lightweight database engine, then SQLite could be your solution. It offers a robust platform that can be a capable option for low to medium-traffic websites, as well as many other uses.

As you’ve read, SQLite comes with numerous benefits, including:

  1. Excellent performance due to its lightweight architecture.
  2. Easy setup and administration.
  3. Cross-platform compatibility and portability.

Do you have any questions about using SQLite? Tell us in the comments section below!

Image credit: Pexels.

The A2 Posting