Normalization vs Denormalization

by Antonio M
This article talks about the differences between Normalization and Denormalization.
The author also lists the the pros and cons of using each technique. Some of the
advantages of Normalized data is that when data needs to be updated in a table
they can be updated much faster because there will not be any duplicated data.
This is good because when using an INSERT statement the data can be inserted into
one location this is also similar when you would use a SELECT statement when getting
data from a single table. One of the issues with normalization is when you join
tables that have been normalized indexing strategies will not work well for these
tables because data can be spread out among other tables. As for the advantages
for denormalization is mostly beneficial when there is a big need to read-load
data from a database. The reason being is that majority of the data needed are
present in the table that is being selected so there would be no need to join
tables since this can be time consuming. Although there will be duplicate data
in a denormalized table and this can be complex when updating data. The author
says that the best way to decide when to either normalize or denormalize a database
is to have a mixture of both and just depends on the need of the database, if it
is read more or updated more. One suggestion the other had mentioned is the use
of triggers when a table has been denormalized, that way when there is ever a need
to update information in a denormalized table instead of updating duplicate data
it can reference the table where that duplicate data is coming from and save time
rather than going through each row of a database and updating it one by one.

I think this relates to our lectures because it talks about normalized and denormalized
data. It also talks about the pros and cons of each. When I read this article I did not
know that there could be a denormalized way to do things. I had always thought that
normalization was the way to go and that just by doing that it would make your
database better.

I also think that this was very helpful in terms of our second project that we have been
assigned. It reminds us that we can have both a normalized and denormalized way of making
a database. What it really comes down too is just the basic business requirements and the
basic needs of the user, which will depend on how the database will be developed.

Tariq,Ovais.(n.d.).Databases: Normalization or Denormalization. Which is the better technique?. Retrieved February 4, 2012, from

One thought on “Normalization vs Denormalization

  • February 5, 2012 at 6:15 pm

    I also read a similar article about normalization and denormalization. I didn’t even know that denormalization existed. However, it is interesting to know that it does and that it can be used in combination with normalization. The whole idea of knowing which one to use is part of knowing the need of your database. I think this is a good article and also a good reference.

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