6.7 Euphoria Database System (EDS)

6.7.1 Introduction

While you can connect Euphoria to most databases (MySQL, SQLite, PostgreSQL, etc.), sometimes you don't need that kind of power. The Euphoria Database System (EDS) is a simple, easy-to-use, flexible, Euphoria-oriented database for storing data that works better for cases where you need more than a text file and don't quite need or want the power and complexity of larger database packages.

6.7.2 Structure of an EDS database

In EDS, a database is a single file with a .edb file extension. An EDS database contains zero or more tables. Each table has a name, and contains zero or more records. Each record consists of a key part, and a data part. The key can be any Euphoria object--an atom, a sequence, a deeply-nested sequence, whatever. Similarly the data can be any Euphoria object. There are no constraints on the size or structure of the key or data. Within a given table, the keys are all unique. That is, no two records in the same table can have the same key part.

The records of a table are stored in ascending order of key value. An efficient binary search is used when you refer to a record by key. You can also access a record directly, with no search, if you know its current record number within the table. Record numbers are integers from one to the length (current number of records) of the table. By incrementing the record number, you can efficiently step through all the records, in order of key. Note however that a record's number can change whenever a new record is inserted, or an existing record is deleted.

The keys and data parts are stored in a compact form, but no accuracy is lost when saving or restoring floating-point numbers or any other Euphoria data.

std/eds.e will work as is, on all platforms. EDS database files can be copied and shared between programs running on all platforms as well. When sharing EDS database files, be sure to make an exact byte-for-byte copy using "binary" mode copying, rather than "text" or "ASCII" mode, which could change the line terminators.


database: "mydata.edb"
    first table: "passwords"
        record #1:  key: "jones"   data: "euphor123"
        record #2:  key: "smith"   data: "billgates"
    second table: "parts"
        record #1:  key: 134525    data: {"hammer", 15.95, 500}
        record #2:  key: 134526    data: {"saw", 25.95, 100}
        record #3:  key: 134530    data: {"screw driver", 5.50, 1500}

It's up to you to interpret the meaning of the key and data. In keeping with the spirit of Euphoria, you have total flexibility. Unlike most other database systems, an EDS record is not required to have either a fixed number of fields, or fields with a preset maximum length.

In many cases there will not be any natural key value for your records. In those cases you should simply create a meaningless, but unique, integer to be the key. Remember that you can always access the data by record number. It's easy to loop through the records looking for a particular field value.

6.7.3 How to access the data

To reduce the number of parameters that you have to pass, there is a notion of the current database, and current table. The current database.

Any data operation or table operation assumes there is a current database being defined. You set the current database by opening, creating or selecting a database. Deleting the current database leaves the current database undefined. The current table.

All data operations assume there is a current table being defined. You must create, select or rename a table in order to make it current. Deleting the current table leaves the current table undefined. Accessing data

Most routines use these current values automatically. You normally start by opening (or creating) a database file, then selecting the table that you want to work with.

You can map a key to a record number using db_find_key. It uses an efficient binary search. Most of the other record-level routines expect the record number as a parameter. You can very quickly access any record, given it's number. You can access all the records by starting at record number one and looping through to the record number returned by db_table_size.

6.7.4 How does storage get recycled?

When you delete something, such as a record, the space for that item gets put on a free list, for future use. Adjacent free areas are combined into larger free areas. When more space is needed, and no suitable space is found on the free list, the file will grow in size. Currently there is no automatic way that a file will shrink in size, but you can use a db_compress to completely rewrite a database, removing the unused spaces.

6.7.5 Security / Multi-user Access

This release provides a simple way to lock an entire database to prevent unsafe access by other processes.

6.7.6 Scalability

Internal pointers are 4 bytes. In theory that limits the size of a database file to 4 Gb. In practice, the limit is 2 Gb because of limitations in various C file functions used by Euphoria. Given enough user demand, EDS databases could be expanded well beyond 2 Gb in the future.

The current algorithm allocates four bytes of memory per record in the current table. So you'll need at least 4 Mb RAM per million records on disk.

The binary search for keys should work reasonably well for large tables.

Inserts and deletes take slightly longer as a table gets larger.

At the low end of the scale, it's possible to create extremely small databases without incurring much disk space overhead.

6.7.7 EDS API

More details on using EDS, including complete coverage of the EDS API, can be found at Euphoria Database (EDS).

6.7.8 Disclaimer

Do not store valuable data without a backup. RDS will not be responsible for any damage or data loss.

6.7.9 Warning: Use the right file mode

.edb files are binary files, not text files. You must use BINARY mode when transferring a .edb file via FTP from one machine to another. You must also avoid loading a .edb file into an editor and saving it. If you open a .edb file directly using Euphoria's open(), which is not recommended, you must use binary mode, not text mode. Failure to follow these rules could result in 10 (line-feed) and 13 (carriage-return) bytes being changed, leading to subtle and not-so-subtle forms of corruption in your database.