Database management is the method to manage information that is essential to the organization’s business processes. It involves storing data, distributing it to users and applications making edits as needed as well as monitoring changes in data and preventing data corruption due to unexpected failure. It is an integral part of the entire informational infrastructure of a company that supports decision making, corporate growth, and compliance with laws such as the GDPR and California Consumer Privacy Act.

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

A database consists of tables that arrange data according to a certain schema, such as one-to many relationships. It makes use of primary keys to identify records and allows cross-references between tables. Each table contains a set of attributes, or fields, that represent facts about data entities. The most popular kind of database is a relational model developed by E. F. “Ted” Codd at IBM in the 1970s. This design is based on normalizing data to make it more user-friendly. It also makes it easier to update data since it eliminates the need to update several databases.

The majority of DBMSs are able to support multiple types of databases through different levels of external and internal organization. The internal level is concerned with the cost, scalability, and other operational issues, including the physical layout of the database. The external level focuses on how the database appears in user interfaces and other applications. It could include a mix of different external views based on different models of data and could include virtual tables that are calculated with generic data to enhance the performance.