Open-source Analytics Databases

Most applications and programs in the technology era want a place to save data. To do analytics in web apps, a database is a critical cog inside the wheel. There are a few factors to remember when deciding on a database—a primary element is its value, but flexibility and support from website hosting providers are also critical. An open source database is your best option for plenty of reasons.

Open source Analytics Databases; Source: Solutions Review

For example, an open source database won't hit your budget, nor will you have restrictions on how you could use it. Like a content management system (CMS) like WordPress, open-source tools can offer a lot of power and capability. Even better, many of the most popular (and well-supported) databases are open-source.

What is open-source database software?

A database is backend storage for an app, like a web application (that's the most popular app type it's used for). The database itself will sit on your server alongside the other backend factors, including the middle files of your web page, any media you operate, and the server configuration files.

In other words, the database is one of the endpoints for your website. For instance:

  • To communicate with the server, your website's pages will use HTML and PHP.
  • The server will get entry to the database on your behalf (a seamless technique), pull or push data, and return it to the front end.
  • Your web page will display or update its content based on the database.

It’s a fundamental piece of technology on your website and server. As such, you’ll need to have as much flexibility in and knowledge of your database as is possible. This brings up your first debate: whether or not to opt for an open-source database or a proprietary one.

An open-source database will be 100% available to you regarding the codebase and ability of the system and generally have a strong ecosystem to keep to modern and performant.

Why you should use an Open Source Database

Of course, a database in itself is an essential part of any web app. You’d discover it's tough to create something useful without one. However, you may not see the immediate benefits when selecting an open-source database.

You’ll discover that you’d use an open-source database for the same reasons you’d choose an open-source CMS such as WordPress. For instance:

  • The statistics you keep inside the database are yours, without compromise or restriction. You can scale over time without having to pay non linearly pricing that most propreitary databases lock you into.
  • You can build on top of the database software program, similar to WordPress. This opens up countless opportunities for what you could attain and gives you interesting choices.
  • An open-source database is a wonderful way to scale and propel an app or business without worrying about licensing or high purchasing fees. You can focus on making the database give you the results you want, rather than fighting the licensing.

At this point, you may see how an open-source database is an arguable winner over proprietary or even source-available solutions. With that in mind, let us look at some of the best options on the market.


Speed is the key to the success of the products, programs, and solutions of ClickHouse. Instead of guessing your next step, data can help you get to complex business decisions faster.

ClickHouse; Source: The Cloudflare Blog

ClickHouse is an open-source database management system (DBMS) with a column-oriented structure. It is optimized for online analytical processing (OLAP) and is extremely fast. ClickHouse can return processed outcomes in real time in a fraction of a second. This makes it best for applications running with large structured data sets: data analytics, complex data reports, data science computations, etc.

ClickHouse is highly praised for its noticeably amazing overall performance. But performance is not the only benefit of ClickHouse. ClickHouse is more than a database; it's a sophisticated database control system that supports distributed query processing, partitioning, data replication, and sharding. It's a highly scalable and reliable system capable of managing terabytes of data.

In fact, ClickHouse is designed to write large quantities of data and simultaneously process a lot of analysis requests. And you can easily use a declarative SQL-like query language.


InfluxDB is an open source-time series database (TSDB). This consists of APIs for storing and querying data, processing them in the background for ETL, monitoring and alerting functions, user dashboards, visualizing and exploring the data, and more.

InfluxDB; Source: Medium

Although it could be used for huge deployments, InfluxDB excels at smaller ingestion rates. Benchmarks from its principal competitors (TimescaleDB and TDEngine) each affirm this. The genuine power of InfluxDB (at least InfluxDB 1.x) has traditionally been in pairing it with the rest of the TICK stack: Telegraf, InfluxDB, Chronograf, and Kapacitor.

It needs to be stated that while some functionality is only in InfluxData’s enterprise model, both InfluxDB 2.x and 3.x remain with MIT and Apache. Also, InfluxDB is moving from Go to Rust, although unless you plan to get involved in solving bugs, this might not be a massive problem.


TimescaleDB is an open-source database that was created to make SQL more scalable for time-series data. It’s a fairly new database system. TimescaleDB has been introduced to the market two years in the past and reached version 1.0 in September 2018. Nonetheless, it is built on top of a mature RDBMS system.

TimescaleDB; Source: Medium

TimescaleDB is packaged as a PostgreSQL extension. All code is certified under the Apache-2 open-source license, aside from some source code related to the time-series enterprise capabilities licensed under the Timescale License (TSL). As a time-series database, it affords computerized partitioning across dates and key values. TimescaleDB's native SQL support makes it a great choice for people who plan to store time-series records and already have strong SQL language knowledge.


TiDB is an open-source SQL database that can handle both transactional and analytical workloads. It is well-suited to MySQL and features horizontal scalability, robust consistency, and high availability.

Compared to other open source databases, TiDB is more suitable for constructing real-time data warehouses due to its HTAP architecture. 

TiDB; Source: PingCAP Archived Docs

TiDB possesses a hybrid storage layer such as TiKV, a row-based storage engine, and TiFlash, a columnar storage engine. TiDB is used as a shared SQL layer by these storage engines. TiDB answers online transactional processing (OLTP) and online analytical processing (OLAP) queries and fetches data from both engines based on the cost of the execution plan.

TiDB 5.0 also includes the Massively Parallel Processing (MPP) architecture. TiFlash augments TiDB's computing capabilities in MPP mode. TiDB becomes a master node when dealing with OLAP workloads. The user submits a request to the TiDB server, and all TiDB servers perform table joins and forward the results to the optimizer for decision-making. The optimizer assesses all of the viable execution plans (row-based, column-based, indexes, single-server engine, and MPP engine) and chooses the best one.


In conclusion, analytics is becoming more prevalent the world over with its incorporation in more than one industry, from financial services to healthcare and government institutions. Open source analytics databases are the mainframes of huge data implementation. Before choosing any database, you should check if their capabilities align with your requirements. The rapid increase of information has provided a completely unique opportunity for individuals and organizations to invest closely in databases. There is a desire to develop new features for redefining conventional businesses through the use of large scale analytics.

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