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Difference between Centralized, Decentralized and Distributed Systems in DBMS

Several files are used to store data in a conventional database system. Data about each customer, for instance, might be kept separately in a file. A centralized database system, on the other hand, keeps all the information in a single file. Due to the fact that the data is all saved in one location, it is simpler to manage and search the data.

Due to the widespread use of computers, a system for storing data and information from many sources is required. Different computers utilize a variety of methods to store and access information through a network channel. Database management systems, which use these principles, have many protocols for storing data and information.

Centralized Database Management System

A centralized database management system is one that stores and manages all of the data in one place. This is often referred to as a central database computer system. To concentrate the responsibilities, this approach is typically utilized in organizations, businesses, or institutions. Using a network, a local area network (LAN) or a wide area network, data may be accessed (WAN). A centralized database management system would be a mainframe computer.

Centralized Database's Features

Spread-out query processing

The primary purpose of a centralized database management system is to enable and provide access to every linked computer that satisfies every demand made by a single node.

One core component

One centralized database management system houses all of the data and information. The computer system that satisfies the needs of every connected computer is referred to as the server, and the other computers are referred to as the clients.


One computer system, usually referred to as a server, handles all of the inquiries. This management system does not hold duplicate or pointless data. For the processing of queries and other needs, every linked computer has access to the central computer.


This central database management system is open to the addition of any number of computers. Through a network, these computers are linked to the system.

What purposes serve Centralized databases?

Organizations frequently employ centralized databases to hold data that is needed by several people. They are used to store data about customers, inventory, finances, and other things. Both small and large firms may make use of them. They have a lot of advantages over other types of databases when compared to other databases.

Anybody with the right authorization can access a centralized database. This allows numerous users to work on the same data concurrently, which may save a tone of time. Also, since information and ideas can be confidently shared readily, teamwork is improved. This is due to the fact that they are housed on servers that are intended to operate continuously.

Benefit of centralized database systems

Data integrity

Due to its management and storage in a single computer system, data is more unified. To obtain more trustworthy and useful data, coordination and communication are made simpler.

Redundancy in data

Data is consolidated and kept in a single place. There are no redundant or irrelevant data sets.

Lower upkeep and expense

The centralized database system requires a single storage system and is less expensive to install and maintain than other database management systems. Data may be accessed by all the linked computers.

The centralized database system's drawbacks

Processing slowly

Data is kept centrally in centralized database management systems, where access and processing times are slower than in other management systems. To obtain the data from a single place takes more time.

Lower effectiveness

Problems arise when numerous users attempt to access and process a server query at once. The core computer's processing speed slows down. These issues might make things less effective.

Missing data

If a system malfunctions or data is lost in a centralized database management system, it cannot be retrieved.

Data protection

Data security must be strengthened since data is stored in a centralized computer system. An effective and safer database management system is one that is centrally located.

Localization and scalability

With a centralized database management system, new computer systems may be added or uninstalled more quickly.

Portability of data

Data is kept in a centralized database management system, making it simple to move data from one computer to another.

Decentralized Distributed System

The division of tasks among numerous units is referred to as decentralization. It is a networked system where no one entity has total control. It is the design in which the hardware and software workloads are divided among a number of workstations. These other kinds of systems have been quite popular lately, mostly as a result of the enormous excitement around bit coin. Several firms are now looking for applications for these technologies.

Instead of depending on a single server, a decentralized system distributes the functions among numerous machines. They are owned by many primary parties. The resources can be stored by the owners so that each user can access them. It is possible to see the system graphically. The machines used by each user can be seen as interconnected nodes. To speed up access, each node has a copy of the data on every other node, and several owners each have a copy of every node. As a result, anytime a node's data is updated or changed, the changes are also reflected in the copies. Let's use several instances to illustrate: The newest technology and best illustration of a decentralized system is bit coin. It is a decentralized block chain with no central authority. Anybody and everyone may join the network, participate in transactions, and cast votes. On the basis of the majority of votes, a decision is made. Doge coin is a peer-to-peer, decentralized crypto currency that enables transactions.

We must have a clear idea of decentralization, centralization, and dispersed networks. A central network authority makes decisions for a centralized network. Decentralized systems have several owners. Decentralization is furthered through distributed systems. Ownership is not a notion in this place. All users are owners and all have equal rights.

Every node in decentralized systems makes its own decisions. The sum of the decisions made by the different nodes determines how the system ultimately behaves. It should be noted that the request is not handled by a single entity.

Example: Because bit coin is the most common use of decentralized systems, let's use it as an example. The bit coin network is not owned by a single entity or group. The network is made up of all the nodes that communicate with one another to keep track of how much bit coin each account holder possesses.

Decentralized system characteristics

  • Absence of a global clock: Because each node is independent of the others, they independently operate and adhere to their own clocks.
  • A number of central computing (computers, nodes, servers): many central units that can monitor connections from other nodes
  • Dependent component failure: a central node failure only affects a portion of the system, not the entire system.

Decentralization's importance

  • The following justifications make decentralization crucial:
  • Resource optimization: Not every user needs access to every resource. The user can distribute his load with others at a lower level thanks to the decentralized system.
  • Increased output: Because all users have the same level of authority, everyone works more effectively to achieve the highest level of production.
  • Flexibility: As no limits are enforced by a centralized authority, users are free to express their own opinions. Also, they have the capacity to reconsider their choices.

Implementing Decentralization

An individual user desires to share certain data in a decentralized network. The user has complete authority to post something because they do not need authorization. Every user on the network is linked to one another. As a result, when a user shares data, protocols are used to distribute that data to other peers. The data is accepted by peers. The protocols update the database after the data has been accepted. It is possible to keep track of all the information by maintaining a database.

Need for Decentralization

Today's technology is developing quickly, and there are more people using it. The centralized system falls short of all requirements for system administration. Decentralized systems are therefore become increasingly useful. It produces an administration that is effective, secure, and trustworthy. Peer-to-peer networks are enhanced. It protects each user's right. Every person has the freedom to make their own decisions. The database is accessible to users as well. The primary benefit of decentralization is that the entire network will continue to function even if a portion of it breaks. Decentralization is preferable to centralization mostly because it has the flexibility and knowledge to swiftly respond to market needs.

Decentralization: Is it safe?

Decentralization is quite safe. There is no central server because there is no central authority. The server for each user serves as the main server. There are various servers as a result. The possibility of hacking every server is not realistic. As a result, a lot of businesses are increasingly implementing decentralized networks. Google is a good illustration of this. The ability to operate autonomously is granted to all of Google's products, from mobile Android to internet search.


Vertical scaling is a possibility. The system as a whole will perform better if each node adds resources (hardware, software) to enhance its own performance.

Components of the decentralized system include Node (Computer, Mobile, etc) (Computer, Mobile, etc.) connection to communication (Cables, Wi-Fi, etc.)

Decentralized System Architecture

All nodes are peers of one another in a peer-to-peer architecture. There is no hegemony of one node over another.

One node can coordinate a portion of the system and become a master by voting, but this does not confer supremacy on that node over the other node with whom it is coordinating.

Decentralized system has certain drawbacks

  • Might result in the issue of coordination at the corporate level. Because each node controls its own behavior, it is challenging to do group activities.
  • Not appropriate for tiny systems because to the poor cost/benefit ratio, building and running tiny decentralized systems is not advantageous.
  • There is no means to control a node on the system, and there is no higher node monitoring the actions of subordinate nodes.

Decentralized Systems Benefits

  • Performance constraints are rarely a concern. There are few to no bottleneck situations since the full load is distributed evenly among all the nodes.
  • High availability - Certain nodes (computers, mobile devices, and servers) are constantly accessible and online for use.
  • More autonomy and resource control - Because each node is in charge of its own behavior, there is greater autonomy, which results in greater resource control.

Negative aspects of a decentralized system

  • Global huge jobs are challenging to complete - There is no chain of command to direct others to carry out certain responsibilities.
  • Lack of regulatory control imprecise identification of failing nodes for availability, each node has to be ping-ed. By comparing the expected output with what the node produced, testing and splitting of work must be done to determine which node failed.
  • Unable to determine which node answered - In a decentralized system, a request is really fulfilled by one of the system's nodes, albeit it might be challenging to identify which node fulfilled the request.

Decentralized system applications

  • Peer nodes connect together to form private networks, or private networks.
  • Crypto currency Nodes signed up to be a part of a system where digital money is transferred without a record of who sent what to whom or where they were transmitted. The public address and the amount of bitcoin transmitted may be seen in bit coin; however such public addresses are changing and hence hard to track.

Using Cases-

  • Decentralized databases powered by block chain - Whole databases are divided into pieces and distributed to other nodes for storage and use. Records with names beginning with "A" to "K" in one node, "L" to "N" in the second node, and "O" to "Z" in the third node, for instance
  • Crypto currency

Distributed System

The term "distributed system" refers to a group of independent computer systems that are linked through a centralized computer network using distributed system software while being geographically separated from one another. Each system's autonomous computers will interact with one another by exchanging files and resources while carrying out the duties given to them.

Distributed System Illustration

Each social media platform may have a centralized computer network serving as its headquarters, and autonomous systems in a distributed system architecture are computers that may be accessed by any user and utilize their services.

  • Computers may coordinate their efforts and share resources, such as hardware, software, data, etc., thanks to distributed system software.
  • Database: Here is where the data that has been processed by each node or system of the distributed systems linked to the centralized network is kept.
  • As we can see, each autonomous system uses a common application that has the potential to store unique data that is shared by the centralized database system.
  • Centralized Systems must have a Middleware Service and be networked in order to transfer data to autonomous systems.
  • By serving as an interface between the Centralized System and the Local Systems, Middleware Services makes various services available that are not by default present in the Local Systems or the Centralized System. Systems interact and handle data utilizing elements of middleware services.
  • To facilitate processing by autonomous systems, the data that has been transported across the database will be separated into segments or modules.
  • After being processed, the data will be sent over the network to the central system where it will be stored in a database.

Features of a Distributed System

  • The capacity to use any Hardware, Software, or Data anyplace in the System is known as resource sharing.
  • Openness: It is interested in system extensions and upgrades (i.e., How openly the software is developed and shared with others)
  • Concurrency is a feature of Distributed Systems, which deal with the same activity or functionality that may be carried out by several users who are located in different places. Each local system has unique resources and operating systems.
  • Scalability: It expands the system's scope as a number of processors interact with more users by adapting to enhance the system's responsiveness.
  • Transparency: While there should be privacy in every system, it hides the complexity of distributed systems from users and application applications.
  • Heterogeneity: Dispersed system components may differ from one another in terms of networks, computer hardware, operating systems, programming languages, and developer implementations.

Applications in distributed systems

  • Naturally distributed applications, which is an advantage of distributed systems.
  • Users who are spread out geographically share information in distributed systems.
  • Resource Exchange (Autonomous systems can share resources from remote locations).
  • It is more flexible and offers a superior price-performance ratio.
  • It responds faster and moves data more quickly.
  • It is more resistant to component failure and more reliable and available.
  • It features gradual expansion capabilities as well as extensibility, allowing systems to be expanded in more distant places.

Disadvantages of a distributed system

  • The absence of modern software that is appropriate for distributed systems.
  • When resources are shared among many systems, security is a challenge because data is easily accessible.
  • Data transport may be hampered by networking saturation if there is a network latency, which will make it difficult for users to obtain data.
  • Distributed systems' databases are far more complicated and difficult to handle than those of single-user systems.
  • A distributed system's network could get overloaded if every node tries to deliver data all at once.

Applications Area of Distributed System:

  • Applications Finance and commerce are the focus of distributed systems, including Amazon, eBay, online banking, and e-commerce websites.
  • Search engines, Wikipedia, social media, and cloud computing are examples of the information society.
  • Amazon, Salesforce, Microsoft Azure, and SAP all use cloud technologies.
  • YouTube, online gaming, and music provide entertainment.
  • Healthcare: Health Informatics and online patient records.
  • E-learning for education.
  • Logistics and transportation: GPS, Google Maps.
  • Management of the environment: sensor technologies.

Expanding our database

Suppose if our online application becomes wildly successful. Assume if the number of requests per second coming into our database doubles what it can manage. Your application's performance would start to degrade right away, and your users would become aware of it.

Together, let's scale our database to handle our increasing needs.

In a typical online application, reading information happens far more often than adding new information or changing existing data.

The so-called Primary-Replica Replication technique is one way to improve read performance. In this case, you set up two additional database servers that communicate with the primary one. You can only read from these new instances, which is the catch.

Centralized Vs Decentralized Vs Distributed Systems in DBMS

Now that you are more knowledgeable about each system, let's compare them to one another. Key factors including fault tolerance, maintenance, scalability, development, and evolution are highlighted in the following head-to-head comparison. We are utilizing straightforward ratings for each of them, such as low, moderate, and high.

Error tolerance

  • Centralized systems, low
  • Decentralized systems, moderate
  • Distributed systems, high


  • Centralized systems, low
  • Decentralized systems, moderate
  • Distributed systems, high


  • Centralized systems, low
  • Decentralized systems, moderate
  • Distributed systems, high


  • Decentralized systems and distributed systems are under moderate development.
  • A high degree of centralization


  • Low evolution: Centralized structures
  • High: Distributed and decentralized systems

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