View Full Version : Should I use a table or XML for not-necessarily tabular data?

03-23-2009, 07:19 PM
First, let me lay the ground work.
I am going to have a "Part Work Screen" (php) pulling info from our database (stock levels, quote/sales history, etc).
This is all tabular data, so I know that a DB is the best place for that info, but
I will also be pulling series level data, and this isn't inherently tabular.

(please keep in mind that I'm a total noob.)


<pdf link/>
<pdf link/>
<photo link/>
<photo link/>
<photo link/>
The series info will be simple, but can have anywhere from zero-to-many links of one type, regardless of whether it has zero-or-many links of another type.
It seems to me that using a table would kinda be like "wasting space".

Am I correct in thinking that XML would be best suited for this?
Note: For starters, there are probably about 15k different series representing about 65k part numbers. This will continue to grow.
I can, however, parcel out the XML and have a separate data-island for each PN Category (ie: machines, people, animals) if size tends to be a hurdle for XML.

I'm looking for some advice and/or suggestions from the seasoned pro's (or anyone with something to add).

~ Mo

NOTE: Realizing I may get a slightly biased opinion or two, I am also posting this in the MySQL group to see what kind of biased opinions I can milk out of them :), then reconcile everything together.

03-23-2009, 08:58 PM
cross posting is against cf rules:


see 1.2 from:



Alex Vincent
03-23-2009, 09:02 PM
Closing thread per previous comment.