Choosing the right database is a critical choice when building any software application. All databases have different strengths and weaknesses when it comes to performance, so deciding which database has the most benefits and the most minor downsides for your specific use case and data model is an important decision. Below you will find an overview of the key concepts, architecture, features, use cases, and pricing models of DataBend and TimescaleDB so you can quickly see how they compare against each other.
The primary purpose of this article is to compare how DataBend and TimescaleDB perform for workloads involving time series data, not for all possible use cases. Time series data typically presents a unique challenge in terms of database performance. This is due to the high volume of data being written and the query patterns to access that data. This article doesn’t intend to make the case for which database is better; it simply provides an overview of each database so you can make an informed decision.
DataBend vs TimescaleDB Breakdown
Time Series Database
DataBend can be run on your own infrastructure or using a managed service. It is designed as a cloud native system and is built to take advantage of many of the services available in cloud providers like AWS, Google Cloud, and Azure.
TimescaleDB is built on top of PostgreSQL and inherits its architecture. It extends PostgreSQL with time-series-specific optimizations and functions, allowing it to manage time series data efficiently. It can be deployed as a single node, in a multi-node setup, or in the cloud as a managed service.
Timescale License (for TimescaleDB Community Edition); Apache 2.0 (for core PostgreSQL)
Data analytics, Data warehousing, Real-time analytics, Big data processing
Monitoring, observability, IoT, real-time analytics, financial market data
Horizontally scalable with support for distributed computing
Horizontally scalable through native support for partitioning, replication, and sharding. Offers multi-node capabilities for distributing data and queries across nodes.
DataBend is an open-source, cloud-native data processing and analytics platform designed to provide high-performance, cost-effective, and scalable solutions for big data workloads. The project is driven by a community of developers, researchers, and industry professionals aiming to create a unified data processing platform that combines batch and streaming processing capabilities with advanced analytical features. DataBend’s flexible architecture allows users to build a wide range of applications, from real-time analytics to large-scale data warehousing.
TimescaleDB is an open source time series database built on top of PostgreSQL. It was created to address the challenges of managing time series data, such as scalability, query performance, and data retention policies. TimescaleDB was first released in 2017 and has since become a popular choice for storing and analyzing time series data due to its PostgreSQL compatibility, performance optimizations, and flexible data retention policies.
DataBend for Time Series Data
DataBend’s architecture and processing capabilities make it a suitable choice for working with time series data. Its support for both batch and streaming data processing allows users to ingest, store, and analyze time series data at scale. Additionally, DataBend’s integration with Apache Arrow and its powerful query execution framework enable efficient querying and analytics on time series data, making it a versatile choice for applications that require real-time insights and analytics.
TimescaleDB for Time Series Data
TimescaleDB is specifically designed for time series data, making it a natural choice for storing and querying such data. It provides several advantages for time series data management like horizontal scalability, columnar storage, and retention policy support. However, TimescaleDB may not be the best choice for all time series use cases. One example would be if an application requires very high write throughput or real-time analytics, other specialized time series databases like InfluxDB may be more suitable.
DataBend Key Concepts
- DataFusion: DataFusion is a core component of DataBend, providing an extensible query execution framework that supports both SQL and DataFrame-based query APIs.
- Ballista: Ballista is a distributed compute platform within DataBend, built on top of DataFusion, that allows for efficient and scalable execution of large-scale data processing tasks.
- Arrow: DataBend leverages Apache Arrow, an in-memory columnar data format, to enable efficient data exchange between components and optimize query performance.
TimescaleDB Key Concepts
- Hypertable: A hypertable is a distributed table that is partitioned by time and possibly other dimensions, such as device ID or location. It is the primary abstraction for storing time series data in TimescaleDB and is designed to scale horizontally across multiple nodes.
- Chunk: A chunk is a partition of a hypertable, containing a subset of the hypertable’s data. Chunks are created automatically by TimescaleDB based on a specified time interval and can be individually compressed, indexed, and backed up for better performance and data management.
- Distributed Hypertables: For large-scale deployments, TimescaleDB supports distributed hypertables, which partition data across multiple nodes for improved query performance and fault tolerance.
DataBend is built on a cloud-native, distributed architecture that supports both NoSQL and SQL-like querying capabilities. Its modular design allows users to choose and combine components based on their specific use case and requirements. The core components of DataBend’s architecture include DataFusion, Ballista, and the storage layer. DataFusion is responsible for query execution and optimization, while Ballista enables distributed computing for large-scale data processing tasks. The storage layer in DataBend can be configured to work with various storage backends, such as object storage or distributed file systems.
TimescaleDB is an extension built on PostgreSQL, inheriting its relational data model and SQL support. However, TimescaleDB extends PostgreSQL with custom data structures and optimizations for time series data, such as hypertables and chunks.
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Unified Batch and Stream Processing
DataBend supports both batch and streaming data processing, enabling users to build a wide range of applications that require real-time or historical data analysis.
Extensible Query Execution
DataBend’s DataFusion component provides a powerful and extensible query execution framework that supports both SQL and DataFrame-based query APIs.
Scalable Distributed Computing
With its Ballista compute platform, DataBend enables efficient and scalable execution of large-scale data processing tasks across a distributed cluster of nodes.
DataBend’s architecture allows users to configure the storage layer to work with various storage backends, providing flexibility and adaptability to different use cases.
TimescaleDB automatically partitions time series data tables using hypertables and chunks, which simplifies data management and improves query performance.
Time series focused SQL functions
TimescaleDB provides several specialized SQL functions and operators for time series data application scenarios, such as time_bucket, first, and last, which simplify querying and aggregating time series data.
As mentioned earlier, TimescaleDB extends PostgreSQL’s query planner for writing and querying time series data, including optimizations like time-based indexing and chunk pruning.
DataBend Use Cases
DataBend’s support for streaming data processing and its powerful query execution framework make it a suitable choice for building real-time analytics applications, such as log analysis, monitoring, and anomaly detection.
With its scalable distributed computing capabilities and flexible storage options, DataBend can be used to build large-scale data warehouses that can efficiently store and analyze vast amounts of structured and semi-structured data.
DataBend’s ability to handle arge-scale data processing and its support for both batch and streaming data make it an excellent choice for machine learning applications. Users can leverage DataBend to preprocess, transform, and analyze data for feature engineering, model training, and evaluation, enabling them to derive valuable insights and build data-driven machine learning models.
TimescaleDB Use Cases
Monitoring and metrics
TimescaleDB is well-suited for storing and analyzing monitoring and metrics data, such as server performance metrics, application logs, and sensor data. Its hypertable structure and query optimizations make it easy to store, query, and visualize large volumes of time series data.
IoT data storage
TimescaleDB can be used to store and analyze IoT data, such as sensor readings and device status information. Its support for automatic partitioning and specialized SQL interfaces simplifies the management and querying of large-scale IoT datasets.
TimescaleDB is suitable for storing and analyzing financial data, such as stock prices, exchange rates, and trading volumes. Its query optimizations and specialized SQL functions make it easy to perform time-based aggregations and analyze trends in financial data.
DataBend Pricing Model
As an open-source project, DataBend is freely available for use without any licensing fees or subscription costs. Users can deploy and manage DataBend on their own infrastructure or opt for cloud-based deployment using popular cloud providers. DataBend itself also provides a managed cloud service with free trial credits available.
TimescaleDB Pricing Model
TimescaleDB is available in two editions: TimescaleDB Open Source and TimescaleDB Cloud. The open-source edition is free to use and can be self-hosted, while the cloud edition is a managed service with a pay-as-you-go pricing model based on storage, compute, and data transfer usage. TimescaleDB Cloud offers various pricing tiers with different levels of resources and features, such as continuous backups and high availability.
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