Database system architecture means design or construction of database system. The database system architecture provides general concept and structure of database system. The architecture of most commercial database management systems is based on the three-level architecture by DBTG.
The Three-Level Architecture
An early proposal for a standardized terminology (or vocabulary) and architecture for database system was developed and published in 1971 by DBTG (Database Task Group) appointed by CODASYL. A similar architecture and terminology were developed and published in 1975 by SPARC (Standard Planning and Requirements Committee) of American National Institute. As a result of these and later reports, databases can be viewed at three levels, know as external, conceptual and internal levels. The three-level architecture is also known as schema architecture. The purpose of the three-level architecture is to separate the user application and the physical database. The reasons of this separation are:
- Different users and need different views of the same data.
- Users should not have to deal directly with the physical database storage details.
- The DBA should be able to change the database storage structure or storage device without affecting other user's views etc.