NoSQL vs SQL: Understand the Differences and Make the Best Choice

nosql vs sql
The tough choice of NoSQL vs SQL. An important decision for any business that may pay the price for down the road if you don’t plan accordingly. Here, we break down the important distinctions and discuss NoSQL vs SQL for you to make an informed decision.

What is NoSQL

NoSQL or Not Only SQL is an alternative to relational databases such as MySQL, Postgres, and SQL Server. Typically NoSQL databases are popular for working with large sets of data as data is stored in the form of flat collections so reading or writing operations is much faster. There is also less management for NoSQL databases as they support automatic repair, data distribution, and simpler data models. MongoDB, Couchbase, and Cassandra are popular NoSQL databases, but what do their queries look like? If NoSQL is all about leaving SQL behind, then what happens? These are fair questions, for example MongoDB uses its own syntax that kind of resembles JavaScript. Let’s take a look:
db.inventory.find( { status: "D" } )
In the above query the example selects from the inventory collection all documents where the status equals “D”. It is not too difficult to follow, but does feel a little foreign if you are used to SQL.

What is SQL

SQL or Structured Query Language is a language used in programming and designed for managing data held in a relational database management system. Some examples of popular SQL databases are Microsoft SQL Server, MySQL, and Postgres. One of many reasons for its popularity is how portable it is. SQL can be used in the program in PCs, servers, laptops, and even some of the mobile phones. Unlike NoSQL databases, SQL databases have an established, well defined standard. The language is also very straightforward, let’s take a look at it:
SELECT * FROM inventory WHERE status = "D"
In the above query the example selects from the inventory collection all documents where the status equals “D”. Sound familiar? That is because it is doing the same thing the MongoDB query is doing.

Which is Better?

This all depends on what your goals are. SQL databases tend to be beneficial for companies that have a clear business structure and do not plan on making many changes to their database structure. If your company has rapid growth or no clear schema definitions then a NoSQL database is the right choice for you. If you’re uncertain about which type of database is best for your business, you can schedule a consultation with one of our experts today.

What if you want to use a SQL database but not learn SQL or the opposite, use a NoSQL database without learning how to handle the data? That is where DreamFactory comes into play, interact with your data without having to learn SQL. In minutes generate an API from nearly any datasource that is fully documented and secure without code. Contact an expert today to learn how to cut development cost and time in half.

Rakuten RapidAPI and DreamFactory Partner Up On Open API Adoption

Rakuten RapidAPI and DreamFactory partner up on open API adoption We’re excited to announce that Rakuten RapidAPI, the world’s largest API marketplace is teaming up with DreamFactory, the fastest API creation and management platform. Our goal is to help our developer users streamline API development, usage and distribution. Rakuten RapidAPI and DreamFactory tools and services will allow developers to seamlessly create swagger format APIs, easily monetize and consume public APIs, and launch new services quickly and securely.

RapidAPI and DreamFactory

Today, Rakuten RapidAPI is the world’s largest API Marketplace with over 10,000 APIs. Our mission is to help developers and enterprises alike reduce engineering time, cost and effort through the power of public APIs. With such a comprehensive catalog, we’ve got something for any use case, all accessible from a single platform. We’ve also just hit our 1MN users milestone! For API Providers, this means access to a global user base on day 1. Our built in toolset lets you configure and set pricing for your API. We manage billing and collections, and pay out your share. DreamFactory API-as-a-Service offering helps startups to enterprises create Swagger 2.0 documented APIs with streamlined management features and military grade security. Today, DreamFactory hypercharges app development and digital transformation efforts for 400,000 developers- from startups to Global 2000 companies. Here’s what DreamFactory CEO James Crennan had to say about this partnership. “DreamFactory’s extensive open source community spans single developer startups to companies such as Nike and Walmart. A partnership with Rakuten RapidAPI helps our community build innovative products powered by best-in-class APIs. Similarly, we see Rakuten RapidAPI as a valuable channel for any of our clients are seeking to monetise their APIs.”

Why we’re teaming up

Rakuten RapidAPI and DreamFactory products are both built with standardised interfaces and integrations as in mind improve developer experience. As both the amount of software and their underlying complexity increase, developers have to manage multiple tools, services, and integrations. The Rakuten RapidAPI API Marketplace goes beyond aggregating APIs. Our standard API portal includes built-in tooling for API configuration, endpoint testing, service subscriptions, and code snippet in 11 programming languages. This means developers no longer have to juggle multiple accounts, navigate multitudes of developer portals, or monitor API performance from multiple dashboards. This makes us the only platform you need to find, test, and connect to public APIs.

RapidAPI and DreamFactory

Experts from Gartner and Forrester consistently point out that API creation is the single largest burden for development efforts. It’s hard to keep to a completion schedule, they’re subject to wildly different code standards, and introduce ‘key man risks’ through purposefully difficult code that stifles on-boarding. As a result, internally built APIs end up being minimally reused, resulting in duplicated code that requires ongoing maintenance. At the same time, APIs are vital to enabling modern, digital applications. That’s why DreamFactory set out to fix today’s broken API creation efforts. DreamFactory’s Swagger documentation provides a standardized URL structure to every database, meaning the way you call information through an API for SQL Server is the same as for MongoDB. DreamFactory also offers a standardized method of managing your portfolio of APIs from a central point – bringing sanity, control and giving back productivity. Here’s what their standard Swagger documentation looks like across any DB. Need a standardized API in a flash? Reach out to the DreamFactory team to find out how they can help you build it in less than 30 seconds.

About Rakuten RapidAPI

RapidAPI and DreamFactory

Rakuten RapidAPI is the world’s largest API marketplace with over 8,000 APIs used by 500,000 developers around the world. Our platform helps software developers and enterprise engineering teams seamlessly test and integrate open APIs for their applications, saving them previous engineering time, effort and cost. Companies like Microsoft, Sendgrid, and Crunchbase are already our valued partners.

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About DreamFactory

RapidAPI and DreamFactory

DreamFactory is the fastest API management solution on the market, allowing users to generate standardised, secure and fully documented APIs in under a minute. We satisfy an open source community of over 400,000 as well as serving commercial clients in Fortune 500 companies. Our platform allows developers to rapidly integrate any number of data sources through single or multiple APIs, saving development time and streamlining application development.

Monitoring APIs with Prometheus

DreamFactory, Prometheus, Docker, and Grafana
DreamFactory, Prometheus, Docker, and Grafana
Have you ever wanted a quick and easy way to monitor your Docker environment? Do you want to have an API monitor with minimal configuration? Well it looks like there has never been a better time to monitor your API as there is a plethora of awesome tools out there to help us such as Prometheus and Grafana. If you would like to follow along with this blog start by downloading DreamFactory from our github repo, or if on-prem isn’t for you try our new hosted solution for free today!

Installing DreamFactory

To spin up your Docker instance fast start by cloning our Docker repository
git clone
cd df-docker
You will then want to build the image
docker-compose build
Now that it is built lets start them up
docker-compose up -d
Once you go to in your browser, it may take some time, you will be asked to create your first admin user. For more installation options check out our README.

SQL Server API

Monitoring with Prometheus

If we navigate to, we will now see Prometheus. It is an open-source systems monitoring and alerting toolkit. To see what is happening, you have to run queries. To help give you an idea of what is happening, lets start with a basic query to see how many containers are running.
scalar(count(container_memory_usage_bytes{image!=""}) > 0)
Shows we have 10 containers running and give us a little graph.

SQL Server API
An advantage of Prometheus is alerts. To get alerts we can run:
sum(ALERTS{alertstate="firing"}) by (alertname)
This will return any active alerts that are firing letting us know if we need to take action. In my case Jenkins is down so Prometheus is able to alert me and if anything else were to go down it can be found here.

SQL Server API

There are plenty of other queries that can be ran and I highly encourage you to explore Prometheus to see its true potential. Check out Prometheus queries yourself and create your own. If you are interested in configuring this for a Ruby application, check out our friends over at Scout who wrote a blog about doing exactly that.


Now we have DreamFactory and Prometheus communicating. Prometheus dashboards are not that impressive for the time being, so in the next blog we will be exploring how to make Prometheus and Grafana work together to build the best dashboards. Check back often for updates and the next blog: Monitoring APIs with Grafana