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In Cloud Computing and Database Last updated: December 23, 2022
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Get ready to know all about the next-gen future of databases, i.e., Serverless databases!

Any database that adheres to the core principles of serverless computing is a serverless database. Serverless Database was created for workloads that are unpredictable and can change quickly.

Serverless does not mean no servers are needed. It means that the underlying servers are not required to be managed, provisioned, or paid for by you.

You pay for the resources that you use based on their CPU and RAM capacities and how active they are.

How Serverless Database Works

The Serverless Database model relies on the separation of processing and storage. You need to create an endpoint and set the minimum and maximum capacities.

Image Credit: Simform

Then, you can issue queries to the endpoint. This proxy acts as a link to a large number of database resources. This allows your connections to stay intact even scaling operations occur behind the scenes.

Separating storage from processing has another advantage. Scaling down to zero processing is possible, and you only have to pay for storage. Scaling can be done in just 5 seconds, depending on the application. You also have access to a pool of “warm” resources ready to help you with your needs.

Serverless Database: Advantages


Cost Efficiency

A fixed number of servers is more costly than a serverless database and takes more time to buy. It can be cheaper than setting up an autoscaling group, and it is also more cost-effective because the bin-packing of machine resources makes it more efficient.

This includes licensing, installation, maintenance, support, and patching. You are only charged for the time and memory you use to run your code.

Automated scalability

Developers don’t need to configure or set up any autoscaling policies or systems to achieve serverless scaling based on workload. This all falls on the shoulders of the cloud provider, who must meet the actual demands with the appropriate performance powers.

Quick deployments and updates

Serverless infrastructure eliminates the need to upload code to servers and configure backend settings to make a working application. It is easy for developers to upload small pieces of code and then release a new product. Developers can upload both codes at once and one function at a given time.

This makes it easy to update, patch, fix or add new features quickly to an app. Developers can make small changes to an application rather than updating the entire application.

Higher productivity

You will get more out of your serverless system if you spend less time on it, make less effort in areas where interaction is required, and hire a team of professionals that is optimally sized to achieve better results.

Serverless Database: Disadvantages

Cold start problems

Handling cold starts is one of the most important and challenging aspects in this field. A serverless database that isn’t being used will simply go idle to conserve resources and prevent unneeded performance.

The system “wakes up” and needs time to restart all its processes. You may experience delays and slow response times if you’re the first person to touch the system at its cold start.

Difficulty testing and debugging applications

The serverless model presents another challenge. It is difficult to replicate a serverless environment to test and monitor code performance before it goes live. This is due in part to the fact that developers don’t have access to cloud-provider backend services.

To debug complex systems in depth and efficiently, you can’t use a profiler or a debugger. You have the option to try third-party tools that are increasingly available on the market.

More monitoring

Serverless solutions require that you place a greater emphasis on monitoring and pointing out performance issues or overuse of resources. This is due in large part to the fact that cloud solutions are rarely open-source.

Vendor Lock-in

When migrating to another provider, choosing a serverless model may present problems. This is due to the fact each provider has different workflows and features.

Features of Serverless Database

Serverless databases offer some of the most exciting features, such as:

#1. Multi-tenant Architecture

Serverless databases offer the advantage of being able to use a single pool resource that can be used for multiple projects in your organization. This is a big plus for the developers as they don’t have to create application-specific siloed sources of data.

Multi-tenant architecture makes this possible. Developers can set up, configure, and deploy multiple applications within a single database cluster.

Image Credit: AWS

#2. Geo Distribution

Because most businesses operate on a global basis, it is essential that data be available all over the globe. The real-time experience can be enhanced by the proximity to data centers. A point of failure is also eliminated, so the possibility of an outage is very unlikely.

Serverless databases allow you to replicate multiple data sets across the globe without any additional tools or custom development. 

#3. Little or no Manual-Server Administration

Serverless is a misnomer. It is a collection of servers that have been abstracted away and are automated to make it easier for you to manage them. All the manual tasks, such as provisioning, capacity planning, scaling, maintenance, updates, and so on, are still performed behind the scenes. They are very easy to use and require little or no manual intervention.

#4. Consumption-based Billing

The serverless database, as its charges are based on usage, is the most cost-effective. Storage is not required. You only pay for what you use. If you want to avoid budget overruns, you can set a spending limit.

Relational vs. Non-Relational Serverless Databases


The digital age data can be classified into operational and analytic data. Let’s look at a few different database options developers reach for and see how they compare.

Most companies require OLTP (operational) and OLAP (analytical) systems to store their data. They can either use a relational or non-relational database to support their business needs.

Relational Serverless Database

A relational database is a database type that organizes and collects data according to predefined relationships between key data points. It organizes data so multiple users can find and sort data without changing the logical data categorization.

It eliminates data duplication in storage processes. Structured Query Language is the application program interface (API) for a relational databank.

This system presents data in tabular format. This table represents an entity, such as a product or mobile app. Each row is the actual value, and each row has a unique identifier that is an instance of this type of entity. That’s why records are called.

The columns, on the other hand, hold the attributes of the data. They are the entity’s actual value. Accessing the data is possible without having to reorganize the database table.

NoSQL (non-relational) Serverless Database

Non-relational databases (NoSQL) are more likely to be distributed than SQL databases. It can be used with large numbers of databases. Enterprises need to use modern capabilities such as NoSQL databases to build cloud-native applications.

NoSQL serverless databases are used in real-time web apps. They are simple in design and can quickly handle large amounts of data with horizontal scaling. This is ideal for situations where the schema is unclear and high ingestion rates may be required.

NoSQL serverless databases are very popular as they store large amounts of data in many forms, including graphs, documents, key/value pairs, and column-oriented data structures. This makes it easy for developers to modify the data structure.

Why should one use serverless databases?

Serverless databases are a great option for small teams that don’t have enough staff to manage and scale traditional databases. Serverless databases require little infrastructure and maintenance. This means that your team will need to spend less time maintaining the system. It’s also easy to create new tables and test new features using a serverless database.

Finally, costs. Serverless databases allow you to only pay for what you use without having to configure and fine-tune costs like traditional databases. Serverless databases are great for developers and teams that need to push out new features quickly.

Use Cases of Serverless Database


#1. New Applications

A few minutes of usage over the course of a week or day. If you own a blog with low traffic and want to only pay for the time that any user accesses your site, this is an option. You pay per second for the database resources you use.

#2. Elastic Resizing for Live Video Broadcasting

Live video broadcasting is made possible by serverless architecture. Multiple audience members can interact in live video broadcasting scenarios. The host may be connected to multiple microphones simultaneously. A host can connect several audience members or friends to the screen and then synthesize the picture into one scenario that is presented to live stream viewers.

#3. Infrequent Used Applications

If you have an app that you are proud of and don’t know how it will be received, and because you don’t want the app to fail, this method is for you. Simply create an endpoint, and the serverless database will scale automatically to meet the needs of your application.

#4. Internet of Things (IoT)

The IoT can be described as a term that describes devices found in homes today that can connect to the internet to perform various functions. FaaS is increasingly being used by these devices to perform their tasks. They only send and receive data when an event triggers them.

Businesses save money by not having to pay extra for computing power that they aren’t using. FaaS makes it possible to scale quickly and automatically, so developers don’t have to worry about unpredictable usage patterns.


These scenarios show that serverless architecture has many benefits for developers and businesses. Serverless databases can improve your computing speed and resilience while reducing the time and cost of scaling and resources. There are many types of serverless databases, both relational and non-relational.  However, they all have the same goal: to scale on demand without adding management burdens and to reduce costs by only

  • Avi
    Avi is a tech enthusiast with expertise in trending technologies such as DevOps, Cloud Computing, Big Data and many more. He is passionate about learning cutting-edge technologies and sharing his knowledge with others through… read more
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