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Implementing Microsoft Product Catalogs in SQL Server and Azure SQL database

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Implementing Microsoft Product Catalogs in SQL Server and Azure SQL database
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Product catalog is one of the key scenarios in NoSQL systems. In product catalog scenario, you need to store different types of products with different properties (e.g. phones have memory and CPU power; cars have number of doors and max speed, etc.)

If you try to model this in relational database you will end-up either with single product table with a lot of sparse columns where 5-10 columns will be used for particular product types, or you will have a lot of tables (one for each product type) and joins with many tables that contain parts of data.

In NoSQL systems you can model product as JSON documents and put only required key:value pairs in product objects. However, accessing key:value fields is slower than accessing columns directly.

SQL Server 2016 and Azure SQL Database where new JSON support is available, enable you to combine best practices from relational and NoSQL models. You can store some common properties as standard table columns, put properties that are specific to some products in JSON documents, choose should you store some fields as JSON collections or separate tables (e.g. tags, comments, etc.)

Read the entire article here, Implementing Product Catalogs in SQL Server and Azure SQL database

via the fine folks at Microsoft.

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