Firebird, an Open Source Relational SQL Database

Firebird is a relational SQL database that works on Windows, Linux, FreeBSD, MacOS X (Darwin) as well as on different Unix platforms. Firebird SQL can handle databases from just a few KB to many Gigabytes. Firebird offers high performance, good concurrency, and powerful language support for different triggers and stored procedures. The database has been used in production systems, under various names (the most famous of them was "InterBase") since 1981.


In 2000, Borland started to release InterBase version 6.0 as Open Source. Since that time, Firebird project has become an independent development performed by an Open Source Community and funded by the Firebird Foundation.


Firebird is client/server software designed for use in local and remote networks. Its core is made up of the database server that operates a network of host computers and client libraries so remote computers can connect to and communicate with databases that are managed by the server. The network protocol of choice for Firebird SQL Server on all platforms is TCP/IP.


Firebird conforms to the entry-level SQL-92 requirements and supports the development of dynamic SQL client applications. Here is a list of some of the Firebird’s major features:

  • Referential Integrity
  • Full ACID compliant transactions
  • Stored Procedures and Triggers
  • Multi-Generational Architecture
  • Optional single file embedded version
  • Support for External Functions (User Defined Functions)
  • Connection and Transaction Triggers
  • Almost no configuration needed
  • Multiuser database access
  • Optimistic row-level locking


Firebird is designed with various command-line utilities for managing databases and servers. Being an open source platform, the database is also fully supported by the freeware and commercial GUI database administration utilities. These utilities allow developers to create databases, run SQL commands and scripts, retrieve database statistics, perform maintenance tasks, manage server security, and perform backups and restores.


Firebird provides a Services API which developers can use to perform a variety of management and security tasks.

You might be interested in Microsoft SQL Database