Sample Databases for PostgreSQL and More

This article provides resources to sample databases available on the web for a variety of database servers. Though the emphasis is on PostgreSQL, other database server formats have been provided when convenient, for completeness. A full-featured test database can be useful when evaluating external applications and their compatibility with PostgreSQL.

  • PgFoundry has several sample databases specifically for PostgreSQL included in the PgFoundry DB Samples Project. The samples include ports of the MySQL World Database, Dell DVD Store 2, the US Department of Agriculture’s public domain food and nutrient database, and ISO-3166, containing all countries and subcountries in the world. Thanks to Chris Kings-Lynne for starting this excellent resource.
  • Practical PostgreSQL, published by O’Reilly and available fully online from CommandPrompt, Inc., uses the booktown.sql database. The PostgreSQL dump of the example booktown database is used throughout this book. This file contains both commands to re-create the database schema, as well as some sample data. To install this database after you have installed PostgreSQL, type from the command line psql -U postgres -f booktown.sql template1.
  • The Dell Linux Engineering Team offers Dell DVD Store (DS2). Included are schemas for MySQL, Oracle, and SQL Server. Loaders are included for each database; the loader can populate the tables with data up to 100 GB. A small database of 10 MB can also be generated for simple test cases.
  • Northwind Traders Sample Database for Microsoft Access. Use the Northwind Traders sample database as a tool to help you learn Access 2003.
  • AdventureWorks Data Warehouse OLTP database for Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Express.
  • Some textbooks still reference the Northwind and pubs Sample Databases for SQL Server 2000. This database can be imported into SQL Server Express easily enough. In the C:\Sql Server 2000 Sample Databases, directory, type osql -E -S .\SQLEXPRESS -i instnwnd.sql to initialize the database. A similar command is used to initialize the Pubs database, also found within this directory.