What is the difference between Data files and Log Files in Sql Server?

Data files(.mdf and .ndf)
Data files contain data and objects such as tables, indexes, stored procedures, and views.

Type of Data files

  • Primary data file- The primary data file contains the startup information for the database and points to the other files in the database. User data and objects can be stored in this file or in secondary data files. Every database has one primary data file. The recommended file name extension for primary data files is .mdf.
  • Secondary data file- Secondary data files are optional, are user-defined, and store user data. Secondary files can be used to spread data across multiple disks by putting each file on a different disk drive. Additionally, if a database exceeds the maximum size for a single Windows file, you can use secondary data files so the database can continue to grow. The recommended file name extension for secondary data files is .ndf.

Log files(.ldf)
The transaction log files hold the log information that is used to recover the database. There must be at least one log file for each database. The recommended file name extension for transaction logs is .ldf.



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