Early Database Models

In the days before the relational database model, two data models were commonly used to maintain and manipulate data—the hierarchical database model and the network database model.

Note

Although use of these models is rapidly waning, I've provided a brief overview of each for historical purposes. In an overall sense, I believe it is useful for you to know what preceded the relational model so that you have a basic understanding of what led to its creation and evolution.

In the following overview I briefly describe how the data in each model is structured and accessed, how the relationship between a pair of tables is represented, and one or two of the advantages or disadvantages of each model.

Some of the terms you'll ...

Get Database Design for Mere Mortals™: A Hands-On Guide to Relational Database Design, Second Edition now with O’Reilly online learning.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from 200+ publishers.