Database Lifecycle Management

More and more companies are recognizing that agile practices such as continuous integration and continuous delivery are as applicable to databases as they are to applications.

Implemented correctly, they reduce risk, improve efficiency, and deliver value to customers sooner.

Quite simply, they enable organizations to proactively manage the processes involved in the application and database lifecycle, including planning, development, release, and maintenance.

What is DLM?

Database Lifecycle Management (DLM) refers to the processes that cover the database as part of the wider lifecycle management question.

Just like Application Lifecycle Management (ALM), DLM takes a wide-angle view across the software lifecycle, encouraging teams to use a range of processes and technology infrastructures to manage database changes.

The 2014 State of DevOps report found that:

  • IT performance strongly correlates with practices such as version control and continuous delivery
  • Firms with high-performing IT organizations are twice as likely to exceed their profitability, market share and productivity goals
  • Such IT organizations are more agile and reliable, deploying code 30 times more frequently, with 50% fewer failures

Redgate provides DLM products that enable your organization to include databases alongside applications in agile processes, and become a truly high-performing IT organization.

To learn more, download our DLM whitepaper or arrange a free consultation.

“The journey of managing a team-developed application and its database involves many stages and it is vital a process is put in place to manage all these people, their code, and their environments.”

Grant Fritchey,
SQL Server MVP

See our DLM diagram for an overview of organizational principles, processes, and tools for DLM.

One step at a time

The key to the successful introduction of DLM is to see it not as a single, rigid, rulebook process that forces you to change every aspect of the way your organization works.

DLM is a staged process that can be implemented in your own timeframe, depending on what’s right for your organization. You can choose where to step into the lifecycle, and where to stop or move forward. Each step offers benefits in its own right.

5 steps of DLM


No version control, or manual, ad hoc version control

Version Control

Automated version control solution


Continuous integration

CI and version control for the database


Release Management

Version control, CI, and automated deployment



Drift checking and performance monitoring


How can Redgate tooling help?

To enjoy the benefits of more advanced agile practices, moving from no version control to version control is the first step (and the best way of doing this is by using a proper version control tool).

As you move on, you can then choose to implement continuous integration and release management to establish a continuous delivery process.

Redgate’s DLM solution offers tooling to support each process, which can be used individually or together to deliver the whole range of DLM benefits.

Redgate’s DLM products plug into the infrastructure your organization already has in place to cover application lifecycle needs – your version control system, your CI server, and your release management tool.

SQL Developer Suite

Take your first steps in DLM, with version control and manual deployments

The SQL Developer Suite includes SQL Source Control, a plugin that lets you use your version control system to version control your database: the first step in managing your database lifecycle.

It also gives you seven tools for development and manual change management – everything you need to get started with DLM.

See how to get started with the SQL Developer Suite, or arrange a free consultation.

Looking for Oracle tools? Try the Deployment Suite for Oracle, which includes Source Control for Oracle, a standalone tool which lets you use Subversion or Team Foundation Server with Oracle databases.

DLM Automation

Complete your DLM journey, with database CI and automated deployments

DLM Automation works with your existing CI and release management infrastructure, so you can include your database in both processes. It also provides you with the review and approval steps you need to make sure your process is safe.

With it, you can make automated deployments – and even continuous delivery – a reality for your database.

See how to get started with the DLM Automation, or arrange a free consultation.

Looking for Oracle tools? Try the DLM Automation Suite for Oracle, which lets you add your Oracle database to your CI process.

Download our DLM whitepaper

"We predict the return on investment to be in the order of 700% over the next 5 year period."
Carl Davison, Software Development Team Leader, Yorkshire Water

Find out how major UK utility company Yorkshire Water switched from manual database deployment to Redgate DLM tools – and gained a significant financial advantage.

Read the case study

Why Redgate?

Redgate has specialized in database software for 15 years.

Our products are used by 650,000 IT professionals, in more than 100,000 companies, including 91% of the Fortune 100.

Our philosophy is to design highly usable, reliable tools, which elegantly solve the problems that development and operations teams face every day.

Stay ahead of the game with our online resources

DLM Webinars

Our latest webinar

Steve Jones

Redgate DLM Demo (with TFS, Jenkins, & Octopus Deploy)

Tue, Apr 26, 2016

Register now

Steve Jones is the editor of, a Microsoft SQL Server MVP, and over the last decade has written hundreds of articles for, SQL Server Magazine, and other industry sites.

Microsoft SQL Server MVP, Steve Jones, will show you how Redgate's DLM (Database Lifecycle Management) solution works to improve your database development and deployment processes. You'll see how to:

  • Version control your databases from SSMS to track and understand changes
  • Include your database in your Continuous Integration process to get quick feedback
  • Automate your database deployment process to have safe, reliable, repeatable deployments
  • Monitor your databases across environments to understand their versions and get notified of changes

Previous webinars

The Biggest Database Lifecycle Management Challenges and Predictions for 2016

Database version control – optional or required?

Where's the database in DevOps?

Should your database be Continuously Delivered?

The definitive guide to embracing Database Lifecycle Management

How to safely manage application and database changes with continuous delivery

Arrange a free consultation

If you have any questions about DLM and where Redgate’s tools can help you, please contact us to arrange a consultation.

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