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Chapter 25. Advanced Store-Building > Database Choice and Plan

Database Choice and Plan

Most higher-end stores (most Web sites for that matter) are based on databases that hold critical information about products for sale, product photos, pricing, size, and so on. Databases may also store critical customer information or be plugged into distributor databases for further supply-chain coordination. That means that you will need a database system running that holds and serves critical information into your commerce system. The system publishes this information as users request items.

The choice of your database is one that you should make in a similar manner to your OS and commerce server choice. Most top-of-the-line database systems—whether they are Microsoft SQL Server, Oracle 8, Sybase, or IBM's DB2—are well-designed systems. This means that your site's staff and the consultants who build and help manage the site should play a key role in the decision. Some commerce systems also work better with certain databases because the developers of those systems provided better tools and documentation that help with the integration. For example, Site Server, Commerce Edition and Microsoft's own SQL Server 7 are well tuned for each other. IBM's Net.Commerce and DB2 are another strong pair. All the major servers should offer ways to integrate with the major database systems available, but usually they will favor a certain combination.


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