Traditional File System

File system is collection of data. In this system, user has to write procedures for managing database. It provides details of data representation and storage of data. In this –

  • Data is stored in files.
  • Each file has specific format.
  • Programs that use these files depend on knowledge about that format.
  • In earlier days, database applications were built on top of file systems.

This approach is mostly obsolete but –

  • Understanding problems inherent in file based systems may prevent us from repeating these problems in our database system.
  • Understanding how file system works is extremely useful when converting a file-based system to a database system.

Basically, it is a collection of application programs that performs services for end users such as production of reports. Each file defines and manages its own data.

It doesn’t have a crash mechanism i.e., if system crashes while entering some data, then content of file will be lost. This is disadvantage of traditional file based system. Also, it is very difficult to protect a file under the file system. This system can’t efficiently store and retrieve data.

Advantages of Traditional File System :



  • File processing cost less and can be more speed than database.
  • File processing design approach was well suited to mainframe hardware and batch input.
  • Companies mainly use file processing to handle large volumes of structured data on a regular basis.
  • It can be more efficient and cost less than DBMS in certain situations.
  • Design is simple.
  • Customization is easy and efficient.

Disadvantages of Traditional File System :

  • Data redundancy and inconsistency.
  • Difficulty in accessing data.
  • Data isolation – multiple files and formats.
  • Integrity problems
  • Unauthorized access is not restricted.
  • It co-ordinates only physical access.

To overcome disadvantages of File system, DBMS came in use
DBMS- This stands for Database Management System. It is collection of inter-related data. It has set of programs to access the data. Basically, it contains information about particular enterprise. It provides convenient and efficient environment for use.

Applications of DBMS :

  • Banking
  • Airlines
  • Universities
  • Sales
  • Manufacturing
  • Human Resources

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