A cloud database is a database that typically runs on a cloud computing platform, such as Amazon EC2, GoGrid, Salesforce and Rackspace. There are two common deployment models: users can run databases on the cloud independently, using a virtual machine image, or they can purchase access to a database service, maintained by a cloud database provider. Of the databases available on the cloud, some are SQL-based and some use a NoSQL data model.
Also referred to as Database-as-a-Service (DBaaS), cloud databases can use cloud computing to achieve optimized scaling, high availability, multi-tenancy and effective resource allocation.
While a cloud database can be a traditional database such as a MySQL or SQL Server database that has been adopted for cloud use, a native cloud database such as Xeround’s MySQL Cloud database tends to better equipped to optimally use cloud resources and to guarantee scalability as well as availability and stability.
Cloud databases can offer significant advantages over their traditional counterparts, including increased accessibility, automatic failover and fast automated recovery from failures, automated on-the-go scaling, minimal investment and maintenance of in-house hardware, and potentially better performance. At the same time, cloud databases have their share of potential drawbacks, including security and privacy issues as well as the potential loss of or inability to access critical data in the event of a disaster or bankruptcy of the cloud database service provider.