Some of the main communication and information exchange hubs today are social media. There are many examples of these such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Google Plus. On these sites, people can create accounts and chat with each other. They can exchange music, pictures, data and engage in online conversations or discussions. Just like any other website that accepts and produces data, a social media website has a database where this information is stored. Read on to learn how the databases are applied in social media platforms.

A database is a repository for information. This information is retrieved by performing queries in the database. There are huge volumes of data that are exchanged on social media websites. This information is stored in these database systems. There are various technologies that are used to create these databases. Examples of some of these technologies are MySQL, Oracle and SQL Server database technologies. To prevent malfunctions in the databases or loss of data, there are some important tips that you should follow when creating the database for a social media website. Read on to learn more.

Activities to do when constructing a website for a social website

There are various important features that such a database must have. These features include:

  1. Ability to backup and ensure the recovery of information stored within
  2. The database administrator must be able to monitor, audit and receive alerts from the social media database
  3. It must be easily and effective to operate
  4. It should allow for extensive triaging, discovery and repair of bugs in the data or database structure code. This can be done by an individual or a support community
  5. The database should also have high levels of fault tolerance, performance and scalability. This is so that it can be able to support a growing social media website

The database should be scalable

Most social media websites that are created do not achieve high levels of success. They flounder and fail. However, there are a select few that grow and thrive. With the growing numbers of users, the database must be able to accommodate the growing amount of data as well. As such, it should be scalable.

How many users can the database handle at the same time? This is a question that the team providing dba services should ask themselves while constructing the database for scalability. This ability is often referred to as numbers of requests per second. The database should be able to accept millions of these without crashing or malfunctioning. As such, scalability is one of the features that should be seriously considered when designing and constructing a social media website database.

One of the strategies that is used to create scalability is read-scaling. This allows the database to read large amounts of information very fast. This strategy can be applied in a formula such as 10 read slaves for every write master. Write-scaling is also a strategy that is used. In this strategy, the formula that is applied is where the information in the database is divided into data sets that are partitioned horizontally. In addition to these, some other strategies that are utilized to guarantee maximum scalability are data structures that are lock-free as well as advanced algorithms. These work together to ensure that the database grows as the social media site grows in popularity.

High performance is important

There are literally millions of people on a social media website at every minute of the day. They are all conducting a variety of activities in the site. Examples of these activities are posting information, making comments and posting pictures and videos. They expect the website to perform with razor sharp quickness. As such, the database that handles all this information must have high performance specifications.

The database technology that is applied on a social media website must have very high response times. This performance is expressed in form of percentiles. For example, a good database for a social media website should ensure that 95% of the simple reads requested by users are served in less than 1 second. It should also ensure that 99% of writes or data entries performed by users should be served in less than 2 seconds.

These are some of the statistics expected of a high performance social media website database. Connected to performance, the database should be able to tolerate crashes and failures. The system should be able to be resilient such that a minor crash cannot bring it down for all users. This feature depends extensively on the database design and construction.

How the high performance of the database can be ensured

One of the ways that a Database Administrator (DBA) can ensure that the system will have high performance is by utilizing buffering technology for data writing activities and caching strategies for data reading activities that are performed by the users.

Caching is used to reduce the amount of traffic that is accessing the database system directly. In addition to that, it reduces the amount of response time experienced by the users of the social media website. With its advantages, caching brings along a number of complications. Examples of these are the operability, staleness and coherence of the database. Despite the complexity of utilizing this technology in your social media website database, caching helps the system to work much faster than if it was not utilized at all.

Buffering is another method that is used to guarantee high performance of the backend database system of your social media website. Buffering is applied when users are writing information to the website. It acts as a shield against crashing the database with too much data all at once. It also prevents the users from experiencing latency as they post information to the site. Similar to caching, this method also comes with its own complexities for example ability to tolerate faults. However, buffering increases the speed at which the database responds and guarantees a good user experience.

Conclusion

The database is an important part of any social media website. It holds all the user information. Seeing as this data drives the social media site, the database must be constructed properly using the above guidelines.

Bio

Sujain Thomas is a data IT professional who works closely with DBA experts to provide her clients with fantastic DBA services to solve their data problems. If you need data IT solutions, she is the person for the job. She enjoys writing on database administration services and other topics in the IT field.

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