Microsoft’s SQL Server named best database software in 2016

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Microsoft Corp.’s SQL Server has landed Solid IT GmbH’s database management software of the year award for 2016, beating out Oracle Corp.’s MySQL and the open-source PostgreSQL, which finished second and third, respectively.

DB-Engines, which is owned by Solid IT, said Microsoft won the award despite finishing only third in the overall popularity stakes. Oracle’s flagship database led the overall database management software market with 1,417 points in DB-Engines’ rankings, followed by MySQL (also owned by Oracle) with 1,366 points. Microsoft’s SQL Server came in third with 1,221 points.

But Solid IT co-founders Paul Andlinger and Matthias Gelbmann explained that SQL Server came out tops in the LinkedIn profiles and job offers categories that it uses to tabulate its score. In addition, they said SQL Server was more prominent in discussions on StackOverflow, in Google Trends and in search engine results. Lastly, they credited the official release of SQL Server 2016 and Microsoft’s decision to embrace Linux as further justifications for the award.

Andlinger and Gelbmann were referring to last year’s move by Microsoft to make SQL Server available on multiple Linux versions, which the company said would “enable SQL Server to deliver a consistent data platform across Windows Server and Linux, as well as on-premises and cloud.” Microsoft has since made a public preview of SQL Server on Linux available, ahead of a full release later this year.

Solid IT said that Oracle’s MySQL was chosen as runner-up after closing the gap between itself and the company’s flagship database. Meanwhile, PostgreSQL came in third thanks to a host of new functionality improvements, including a new UPSERT capability, row level security, new big data features and improvements to scale up and scale out high performance workloads.