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Amazon RDS vs Heroku Postgres: What are the differences?

Developers describe Amazon RDS as "Set up, operate, and scale a relational database in the cloud". Amazon RDS gives you access to the capabilities of a familiar MySQL, Oracle or Microsoft SQL Server database engine. This means that the code, applications, and tools you already use today with your existing databases can be used with Amazon RDS. Amazon RDS automatically patches the database software and backs up your database, storing the backups for a user-defined retention period and enabling point-in-time recovery. You benefit from the flexibility of being able to scale the compute resources or storage capacity associated with your Database Instance (DB Instance) via a single API call. On the other hand, Heroku Postgres is detailed as "Heroku's Database-as-a-Service. Based on the most powerful open-source database, PostgreSQL". Heroku Postgres provides a SQL database-as-a-service that lets you focus on building your application instead of messing around with database management.

Amazon RDS and Heroku Postgres are primarily classified as "SQL Database as a Service" and "PostgreSQL as a Service" tools respectively.

Some of the features offered by Amazon RDS are:

  • Pre-configured Parameters
  • Monitoring and Metrics
  • Automatic Software Patching

On the other hand, Heroku Postgres provides the following key features:

  • High Availability
  • Rollback
  • Dataclips

"Reliable failovers" is the primary reason why developers consider Amazon RDS over the competitors, whereas "Easy to setup" was stated as the key factor in picking Heroku Postgres.

According to the StackShare community, Amazon RDS has a broader approval, being mentioned in 1437 company stacks & 526 developers stacks; compared to Heroku Postgres, which is listed in 74 company stacks and 39 developer stacks.

Advice on Amazon RDS and Heroku Postgres

Considering moving part of our PostgreSQL database infrastructure to the cloud, however, not quite sure between AWS, Heroku, Azure and Google cloud. Things to consider: The main reason is for backing up and centralize all our data in the cloud. With that in mind the main elements are: -Pricing for storage. -Small team. -No need for high throughput. -Support for docker swarm and Kubernetes.

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Replies (2)
David Weinberg

Good balance between easy to manage, pricing, docs and features.

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Max Musing
Founder & CEO at BaseDash | 1 upvotes 路 15.2K views

DigitalOcean's offering is pretty solid. Easy to scale, great UI, automatic daily backups, decent pricing.

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Pros of Amazon RDS
Pros of Heroku Postgres
  • 163
    Reliable failovers
  • 154
    Automated backups
  • 129
    Backed by amazon
  • 92
    Db snapshots
  • 86
    Multi-availability
  • 29
    Control iops, fast restore to point of time
  • 27
    Security
  • 23
    Elastic
  • 20
    Automatic software patching
  • 20
    Push-button scaling
  • 4
    Replication
  • 3
    Reliable
  • 2
    Isolation
  • 29
    Easy to setup
  • 3
    Dataclips for sharing queries
  • 3
    Extremely reliable
  • 2
    Follower databases

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Cons of Amazon RDS
Cons of Heroku Postgres
    Be the first to leave a con
    • 2
      Super expensive

    Sign up to add or upvote consMake informed product decisions

    What is Amazon RDS?

    Amazon RDS gives you access to the capabilities of a familiar MySQL, Oracle or Microsoft SQL Server database engine. This means that the code, applications, and tools you already use today with your existing databases can be used with Amazon RDS. Amazon RDS automatically patches the database software and backs up your database, storing the backups for a user-defined retention period and enabling point-in-time recovery. You benefit from the flexibility of being able to scale the compute resources or storage capacity associated with your Database Instance (DB Instance) via a single API call.

    What is Heroku Postgres?

    Heroku Postgres provides a SQL database-as-a-service that lets you focus on building your application instead of messing around with database management.

    Need advice about which tool to choose?Ask the StackShare community!

    What companies use Amazon RDS?
    What companies use Heroku Postgres?
    See which teams inside your own company are using Amazon RDS or Heroku Postgres.
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    What tools integrate with Amazon RDS?
    What tools integrate with Heroku Postgres?

    Sign up to get full access to all the tool integrationsMake informed product decisions

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    What are some alternatives to Amazon RDS and Heroku Postgres?
    Amazon Redshift
    It is optimized for data sets ranging from a few hundred gigabytes to a petabyte or more and costs less than $1,000 per terabyte per year, a tenth the cost of most traditional data warehousing solutions.
    Apache Aurora
    Apache Aurora is a service scheduler that runs on top of Mesos, enabling you to run long-running services that take advantage of Mesos' scalability, fault-tolerance, and resource isolation.
    MySQL
    The MySQL software delivers a very fast, multi-threaded, multi-user, and robust SQL (Structured Query Language) database server. MySQL Server is intended for mission-critical, heavy-load production systems as well as for embedding into mass-deployed software.
    Oracle
    Oracle Database is an RDBMS. An RDBMS that implements object-oriented features such as user-defined types, inheritance, and polymorphism is called an object-relational database management system (ORDBMS). Oracle Database has extended the relational model to an object-relational model, making it possible to store complex business models in a relational database.
    Google Cloud SQL
    MySQL databases deployed in the cloud without a fuss. Google Cloud Platform provides you with powerful databases that run fast, don鈥檛 run out of space and give your application the redundant, reliable storage it needs.
    See all alternatives
    How developers use Amazon RDS and Heroku Postgres
    Pathwright uses
    Amazon RDS

    While we initially started off running our own Postgres cluster, we evaluated RDS and found it to be an excellent fit for us.

    The failovers, manual scaling, replication, Postgres upgrades, and pretty much everything else has been super smooth and reliable.

    We'll probably need something a little more complex in the future, but RDS performs admirably for now.

    AngeloR uses
    Amazon RDS

    We are using RDS for managing PostgreSQL and legacy MSSQL databases.

    Unfortunately while RDS works great for managing the PostgreSQL systems, MSSQL is very much a second class citizen and they don't offer very much capability. Infact, in order to upgrade instance storage for MSSQL we actually have to spin up a new cluster and migrate the data over.

    PSESD uses
    Heroku Postgres

    Stores the admin database for the SRX apps - includes an audit log, error tracking, and SRX admin message log.

    Will also store PRS rules when refactor is complete.

    Tim Lucas uses
    Heroku Postgres

    Rock solid transactional storage of user, purchase and course activity data. During development database dumps were easy to create and download locally for testing.

    datapile uses
    Heroku Postgres

    We use heroku PostgreSQL databases for testing alongside our sandboxed application(s) in heroku.

    Extremely simple, practically a one-click setup.

    Wirkn Inc. uses
    Amazon RDS

    Our PostgreSQL servers, where we keep the bulk of Wirkn data, are hosted on the fantastically easy and reliable AWS RDS platform.

    Digital2Go uses
    Amazon RDS

    We use Aurora for our OLTP database, it provides significant speed increases on top of MySQL without the need to manage it

    fadingdust uses
    Amazon RDS

    RDS allows us to replicate the development databases locally as well as making it available to CircleCI.

    Hunt Norment uses
    Heroku Postgres

    4 years of experience using Heroku Postgres for data storage and management.

    Kyle Fretwell uses
    Heroku Postgres

    Created several tables for users, brands, deals, campaigns, and tracking.