Databases are helpful for many businesses, but especially businesses that offer services online. If you’ve got an app or SaaS, you need to keep all your data in a secure, accessible place.

For instance, we at Penji are a cloud-based graphic service. Our unlimited graphic design service is offered on a convenient online platform. A database can be necessary for our service’s development and operation, especially with clients and designers all around the world.

Many cloud-based services even use cloud-based databases. They offer a low-cost, low-maintenance, and easy-to-access silo for your data. Here are 15 free options for upgrading your business to the cloud.

What are cloud databases?

First, let’s look into what a cloud database software is and how it can be beneficial for your startup. A cloud database is a storage system that lets you save files and data on a server that is connected to the internet. With a cloud database service provider, all the info stored in your company’s computers is transferred to the database, which you can access anywhere with an internet connection.

You no longer have to worry about storage space, weather damage, or hiring a technician every time your computer conks out. All your data is stored in the “clouds” somewhere in the wide, wide world of the internet.

As a startup, getting a cloud database service provider can be costly, but there are options out there to get it done absolutely free… with some limits.

Top 15 free cloud databases

Here are 15 of the best and free cloud databases you can try:

1. MySQL

MySQL free cloud database logo

The most popular open source database, MySQL has been around for more than 30 years. It has evolved and is known to be the best database for web-based apps such as Trello and Gmail. It uses the Structured Query Language (SQL) which lets you store data in tables, create indexes on the data, and query the data.

Facebook and Twitter are some examples of websites that use MySQL to store backend data. It supports a wide variety of systems and has a very low chance of getting your data corrupted. One of its low points though is that you need someone who is proficient in the SQL language for you to use it.

2. PostgreSQL

PostgreSQL elephant logo

PostgreSQL has also been around for a long time, but not as long as MySQL. Its more-than-20-year history has earned it the trust of major companies like Cisco and IMDb, to name a few. It can handle the storage, processing, and extraction of datasets—spatial and non-spatial—remarkably well.

PostgreSQL can manage a huge amount of data and a large number of users all at once. It can run on all major operating systems such as Windows, Linux, and UNIX. It is somewhat lacking in the documentation side, but help is easy to find on the web.

3. NuoDB

NuoDB free cloud database logo

NuoDB is a database company founded in 2008 and its database tech is known to be highly scalable, ACID compliant, and efficient in hybrid workloads. It is easy to install and even easier to manage, with an affordable Enterprise edition for growing businesses.

This company claims that their free cloud database can handle a load of 1 million transactions per second that runs on just 20 servers. It can also with other scripts of MySQL and other web development tools. While its interface may not be as appealing as other providers, its features can’t be beat.

4. MariaDB

MariaDB seal logo

MariaDB is the fastest growing open source database available. It’s also one of the most stable and offers a flexible architecture that allows you to match your tools with your needs. MariaDB is optimized to increase query performance and processing.

This comes from a relatively new company, but has the ability to adapt to your startup’s growing needs, as it also offers a paid version. Unfortunately, support isn’t free even if the software is.

5. Oracle Database XE

Oracle XE cloud database logo

One of the best tried-and-true relational databases, Oracle Database XE is suitable for large installs. It performs well even when handling huge amounts of data. Its powerful architecture lets you develop and deploy apps with ease, but it’s still easy to install and manage.

One caveat, though: it can cost a lot if you want to go pro with the software. If you are on a limited budget, you may have to check the others before you look into this one.

6. MarkLogic

MarkLogic text based DB logo

MarkLogic provides you with 1TB of storage space for free. It has a feature that supports ACID transactions that you can rarely find in a NoSQL system.

While other software offer poor documentation, MarkLogic’s stands out as one of the best. However, upgrading can prove to be too costly for startups—even the hardware for it can be expensive. But for your first terrabyte, this cloud-based database can suit your needs.

7. Azure SQL Database

Microsoft Azure logo

If you’re a startup that needs a flexible free cloud database solution, Azure SQL Database should be on your shortlist. It can easily be scaled without the need for more memory or new servers.

Since it’s already managed, you don’t have to worry about keeping up with infrastructure or upgrading. Migration from on-premise hardware can be difficult, though.

8. Google App Engine

google app engine free cloud database logo

Google App Engine lets you build web apps and mobile backends that are fully scalable. It comes with built-in services such as memcache, No SQL datastores, and user authentication APIs. This is perfect for startups, as it allows for automatic scaling depending on the amount of traffic it receives.

It is offered free for a one-month trial period only, but you’ll only pay for the resources you use. In the long run, it’s still cheaper than others; you no longer have to worry about paying for the maintenance of servers.

9. MongoDB

MongoDB free cloud database green logo

MongoDB is a next-gen database software—and it’s notched over 30 million downloads since its founding in 2009. MetLife and Expedia use it for their storage needs.

Its document model allows you to develop software ideas in Java quite easily. It runs on multiple platforms and provides drivers for most languages such as Python, C++, and Java. They’ve also got indexing, data replication, and ad hoc querying. However, setup can be a long and hard process.

10. Apache CouchDB


If classic SQL isn’t for you, Apache CouchDB is the database you should go for. You can store serialized objects as unstructured data in JSON formatted documents, ideal for web and mobile apps. The response time for queries is amazingly quick. It’s fully schema-free, and can work efficiently on just one machine.

11. Orient DB

OrientDB free cloud database logo

OrientDB is an excellent resource if you need a tool that can share data using clusters, do multi-master replication, and automate transactions and queries. This open-source NoSQL multi-model database works with various platforms –  Linux, Windows, Solaris, Mac OS X, and HP-UX. 

The database allows you to unlock graph databases without needing to deploy multiple systems that would handle other data types. This results in increased security and performance while still giving your business room to scale.

12. SQLite

SQLite logo

Consider SQLite if you want a C language library that provides you with a reliable, self-contained, and full-featured SQL database engine. SQLite prides itself in being the most used database engine in the world. In fact, it’s built into all mobile phones as well as most computers.

As the name suggests, this free cloud database is very lightweight compared to others. The in-memory library also allows clients to use it directly even without having to install or configure anything. In the same vein, it doesn’t need its own server to store a database. 

13. Cassandra

Cassandra free cloud database eye logo

If you’re looking for a free tool that could manage a huge amount of data across a wide range of servers, Apache Cassandra is an excellent option. This cross-platform tool, available for SQL, Go, C++, Python, and Node JS allows users to replicate across multiple data centers. 

This tool is extra useful for businesses needing a super available and scalable database without losing performance. The ventures who choose Cassandra do so because it allows data to be copied to numerous nodes, thus offering a fault-tolerance system. It also provides support for contracts and third-party services, making it a flexible free cloud database.

14. Microsoft SQL

Microsoft SQL Server logo

Developed by Microsoft, Microsoft SQL is a relational database management system (RDbMS). This server supports C, C++, Java, and C# languages, and can be used for a number of platforms, including Docker Engine, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server, and Ubuntu.

One of the main features of this database is the integration of structured and unstructured data using Spark and SQL Server. On top of performance, it can also house intelligent apps, data lakes, and data warehouses. It also offers access to rich, custom Power BI reports, resulting in quicker and better performance.

15. DynamoDB

Amazon DynamoDB free cloud database

Amazon DynamoDB is basically a cross-platform serverless database. It saves users time and effort with automatic scaling. It also backs up clients’ data for protection. This database works with many languages, including Go, Java, Node.js, NET, and more. 

If you’re looking for a free cloud database that offers consistent latency, check out DynamoDB. Besides the consistent latency it offers, it also provides in-memory caching and built-in security, making it an excellent option for ventures that need both features.

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