What Is The Difference Between a Database and a Table?

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A database is a collection of organized and structured data that can be accessed by computers. A table is a structure within a database that stores data. A database can contain multiple tables, while tables can only be contained within a database.

Databases and tables are two terms that you may have heard before but may not know the exact differences between them. In this article, we will explore what makes a database different from a table and vice versa.

Key Differences Between a Database and a Table

Here are the most significant distinctions between databases and tables:

  • A database can contain multiple tables, while a table can only be contained within a database.
  • A database effectively acts as a namespace for a collection of tables.
  • A database can contain tables, views, stored procedures, and functions.
  • Tables in databases can be related to one another through keys. Databases do not.
  • A table contains set columns (based on its schema) and values are added to the table as rows.
  • Tables have set schemas defined where the values need to correspond to these types.

Example: A company may have a customer table that stores information about their customers, such as name, address, and phone number.

They may also have a database that stores all of the customer data in one place. This database could then contain multiple tables, such as an order table and a payment history table.


While both databases and tables are used to store data, they have several key differences. However, the important takeout is that tables are objects inside the database, and databases can not exist without tables. We hope this article has helped clear up any confusion between the two terms.