Couchbase Enterprise Edition versus Couchbase Community Edition

Couchbase Enterprise vs. Community Edition: Which Is Right for Me?

Compare the latest generally available features in Couchbase products


Software updates and support Community Edition Enterprise Edition
Frequent releases with quality improvements couchbase info logo

Couchbase Server Enterprise Edition ships frequent updates to the product with latest feature enhancements and quality improvements. Community Edition releases run behind Enterprise Edition by several months.

Worldwide 24x7 support couchbase info logo

Couchbase Server Enterprise Edition ships frequent updates to the product with latest feature enhancements and quality improvements. Community Edition releases run behind Enterprise Edition by several months.

Patches and maintenance updates couchbase info logo

Couchbase Server Enterprise Edition ships frequent updates to the product with latest feature enhancements and quality improvements. Community Edition releases run behind Enterprise Edition by several months.

Professional services couchbase info logo

Enterprise Edition customers can receive professional services from Couchbase for sizing and capacity planning for production deployments, for data models, and for code or architecture reviews for applications.

Couchbase Server

Data access
Community Edition Enterprise Edition
Key-value interface (read/write)
N1QL (SQL-based queries) couchbase info logo

N1QL for Couchbase Server provides full support for SQL-like queries. Both Enterprise and Community Editions come with full support for N1QL for applications.

N1QL for Analytics (SQL++ queries) couchbase info logo

N1QL for Analytics is a Couchbase implementation, focused on parallel data analysis, of an emerging SQL-for-JSON query language specification called SQL++. N1QL for Analytics has much in common with SQL, but there are differences due to the data model that this language is designed to serve. (SQL was designed in the 1970s to interact with the flat, schematic world of relational databases, while N1QL for Analytics is designed for the nested, schemaless or schema-optional world of modern NoSQL systems.) In particular, N1QL for Analytics is intended for working with the JSON data model.

Full-Text Search (FTS) couchbase info logo

Maximize ROI on your existing Couchbase investment by immediately enabling Couchbase Full-Text Search (FTS) on your operational data. This out-of-the-box integration delivers enhanced capabilities from the database, increases productivity, simplifies maintenance, and features centrally managed role-based security from database to search. Get started easily with the integrated web UI for building indexes, then deploy your application to production using REST APIs and SDKs.

Global Secondary Indexes (GSI) couchbase info logo

Global Secondary Indexes (GSI) is a powerful solution that enables secondary lookup queries for interactive applications that require low latencies.

MapReduce views couchbase info logo

The fundamentals of a view are straightforward. A view creates a perspective on the data stored in Couchbase buckets in a format that can be used to represent the data in a specific way, define and filter the information, and provide a basis for searching or querying the data in the database based on the content.


Views achieve this by defining an output structure that translates the stored JSON object data into a JSON array or object across two components, the key and the value. This definition is performed through the specification of two separate functions written in JavaScript. The view definition is divided into two parts, a map function and a reduce function.

Tunable query consistency couchbase info logo

Couchbase Server provides full consistency for basic data operations but queries can tune consistency from eventual to strict. Both Enterprise and Community Editions come with built-in ability to tune consistency at query time.

Tunable durability couchbase info logo

Couchbase Server provides tunable durability for mutations coming into the system. Couchbase Server core data operations can ask for disk-based or replication-based durability of data during writes. Both Enterprise and Community Editions come with full support for tuning durability.

N1QL+FTS integration
N1QL user-defined functions
Window functions
N1QL Common Table Expression (CTE)
Index advisor
Development and administration tools Community Edition Enterprise Edition
Web-based UI couchbase info logo

Couchbase Web Console provides a graphical user interface for the management of a Couchbase cluster.

Graphical explain plan couchbase info logo

Each time a query is executed, an explain command is automatically run in the background to retrieve the graphical query plan for that query. 

Built-in query editor couchbase info logo

The Query Editor is where you build queries, and run the queries – with syntax coloring, auto-completion, and support for N1QL INFER statements in Enterprise Edition.

Built-in schema browser
Query monitoring couchbase info logo

Couchbase Server Enterprise Edition contains a UI that allows you to monitor the current state of Query Service.


Monitoring and profiling N1QL queries, query service engines, and corresponding system resources is very important for smoother operational performance and efficiency of the system. In fact, often it is vital for diagnosing and troubleshooting issues such as query performance, resource bottlenecks, and overloading of various services.

REST API couchbase info logo

The Couchbase Server REST API enables you to manage a Couchbase Server deployment as well as perform operations such as storing design documents and querying for results.

Command line tools couchbase info logo

Couchbase Server command-line interface (CLI) tools are provided to manage and monitor clusters, servers, vBuckets, XDCR, and so on.

Import and export tools
ANSI joins support in N1QL
Couchbase Eventing couchbase info logo

Couchbase Eventing is a highly available, performant, and scalable service which enables user-defined business logic to be triggered in real time on the server when application interactions create changes in data. Eventing makes it easy to develop, deploy, and maintain data-driven business logic from a centralized platform. Natively integrated with Couchbase, it requires no third-party solutions to license or new DataOps skills to manage.

For information on using the Eventing Service, see Eventing Service: Fundamentals.

High availability and disaster recovery Community Edition Enterprise Edition
Intra-cluster replication couchbase info logo

Intra-cluster replication provides protection against node failures within the cluster. Replication between Couchbase Server nodes is included in both Enterprise and Community Editions.

Automatic failover couchbase info logo

The smart cluster manager built into Couchbase Server detects and recovers from node failures using auto-failover. Manual and auto-failover between Couchbase Server nodes is included in both Enterprise and Community Editions.

Online rebalancing couchbase info logo

Online rebalance redistributes the load across nodes as the Couchbase Server cluster expands and shrinks by adding and removing nodes. The ability to add or remove nodes and rebalance the cluster data distribution among Couchbase Server nodes is included in both Enterprise and Community Editions.

Index replicas and swap rebalance
Cross datacenter replication (XDCR) couchbase info logo

Globally distributed applications use XDCR to replicate their Couchbase Server data across multiple datacenters. The ability to replicate data across datacenters, between multiple Couchbase Server clusters, is included in both Enterprise and Community Editions.

XDCR filtering and throttling
XDCR advanced filtering
XDCR timestamp-based conflict resolution couchbase info logo

Couchbase Server comes with a new option to resolve conflicts with XDCR using timestamps. With this option, conflicts are resolved by comparing timestamps of conflicting documents. This option is only available in Enterprise Edition.

Rack/availability zone awareness couchbase info logo

Administrators can use rack and zone awareness (server groups) in a Couchbase Server deployment to ensure smart placements of replicas across racks and availability zones. Rack and zone awareness with Couchbase Server places replicas smartly to protect against rack or availability zone failures in public or private cloud deployment. This protection is only available in the Enterprise Edition.

Standard backup and restore tools couchbase info logo

Backup and restore ensures full protection against disasters that can take out the entire cluster. Couchbase Server comes with built-in online backup and restore tools in both Enterprise and Community Editions.

High-performance enterprise backup and restore tools couchbase info logo

Big data applications store many TBs of data and backup and restore operations can be time consuming. With the high-performance enterprise backup restore tool, administrators can back up and restore data at a much higher pace, minimize downtime, and improve business continuity and disaster recovery. The enterprise backup and restore tool is only included in the Enterprise Edition.

Full, incremental, and cumulative backups couchbase info logo

With large databases it is important to be able to perform backups and restores incrementally to minimize the restore time and efficiently archive backups. Incremental and cumulative backups and restores allow creating backup chains and are only available in Enterprise Edition.

Automatic failover of disk failures, multi-nodes, and server group
XDCR – prioritization of replication
Security Community Edition Enterprise Edition
Role-based access control (RBAC) couchbase info logo

Administrators in Couchbase Server can be restricted to specific roles that can manage nodes, buckets, security administration, and more. Only the Enterprise Edition comes with role-based access control.

LDAP integration couchbase info logo

Couchbase Server can be integrated with central account management systems within the enterprise through LDAP. Only Enterprise Edition comes with integration for LDAP.

Encrypted network access couchbase info logo

Couchbase Server administrators can use encrypted communication for managing public and private cloud deployments for complying with security requirements. Only Enterprise Edition comes with encrypted communication capabilities for cluster administration.

x.509 CA certificates for TLS
x.509 CA certificates for data service authentication
N1QL request auditing
Log redactions
Client-side field-level encryption
IPv6 support
Node-to-node encryption
LDAP group support
Cipher management
Performance and scaling Community Edition Enterprise Edition
Unlimited query concurrency
Memory-optimized indexes
Homogeneous scaling (by node)
Multi-Dimensional Scaling (MDS) (by service)
Plasma – high-performance storage engine for indexes couchbase info logo

Plasma is the underlying storage engine for the standard global secondary indexes. This highly scalable and performant key-value storage engine uses lock-free data structures to effectively utilize multi-core CPUs and a memory-first architecture that persists only when required. This helps in creating a system that scales almost linearly and exploits the current trends in SSD and Flash storage.

Fast failover
Ephemeral buckets couchbase info logo

Ephemeral buckets provide a highly consistent in-memory performance without disk-based fluctuations. They eliminate the disk component of your buckets and thus reduce the total cost of ownership (TCO). Ephemeral buckets are designed to be used as an alternative to Couchbase buckets whenever persistence is not required, for example, when repeated disk access involves too much overhead. You also get faster node warmups, rebalances, and restarts, as well as cheaper geo-replication.

Index pushdown couchbase info logo

Index pushdowns are performance optimizations where the query engine leverages the indexer functionality as much as possible by pushing down the operations to indexer as part of the index scan. Query Indexer not only indexes data, but also supports various operations such as point scans, range scans, array indexing, sort order, and pagination. This boosts the performance by minimizing the amount of data transferred from indexer nodes to query nodes and the amount of processing done at query nodes.

Index partitioning
N1QL aggregate pushdown
End-to-end compression (client to server and XDCR)
Adaptive indexes couchbase info logo

Adaptive indexes are a special type of GSI array index that can index all or specified fields of a document. They are generic in nature and can efficiently index and look up any of the index-key values. This enables efficient ad hoc queries (that may have WHERE clause predicates on any of the index-key fields) without having to create various composite indexes for different combinations of fields.

Adaptive indexes enable you to simply load data and start querying using a single secondary index and not worry about creating appropriate secondary indexes for each query.

Container management and orchestration Community Edition Enterprise Edition
Autonomous Operator for Kubernetes
OpenShift integration

Couchbase Mobile

Data access
Community Edition Enterprise Edition
Support for iOS, Android, Java(desktop/server), and .NET (UWP and Xamarin) couchbase info logo

The Couchbase Lite embedded database is supported on all the major mobile platforms, including iOS, Android, and .NET. And it supports all major languages, including Swift, Objective-C, Java, and C# (pronounced C sharp). The .NET framework supports desktop and mobile UWP apps as well as cross-platform Xamarin apps.

Data integration APIs, including REST, stream, batch, and event couchbase info logo

Sync Gateway’s public and admin REST APIs allow you to develop web applications that interface directly with Sync Gateway, or to integrate with other external systems’ data.

Eventing couchbase info logo

To facilitate the development of reactive applications, Couchbase Lite can be asynchronously notified of changes to the database, of replication status at the granularity of an individual document, or of updates to the results of a query.

Query couchbase info logo

Couchbase Lite supports an extensive query interface with SQL-based semantics extended to support JSON data (N1QL query language). The query API includes support for JOINS , functions, aggregates, filters, pagination, math functions, parameterized queries, pattern matching, string manipulation, and more.

Full-Text Search (FTS) couchbase info logo

Couchbase Lite’s Full-Text Search capabilities enable natural language querying locally within your mobile apps. This enhances the pattern matching capability by enabling support for stemming, relevance-based ranking, and locale-specific natural language processing.

Peer-to-peer synchronization couchbase info logo

Peer-to-peer sync allows devices running Couchbase Lite to directly sync data with each other without a centralized entity. Couchbase Lite is responsible for storing the data and sync protocol. Applications can send and receive data using any third-party peer-to-peer framework.

Predictive Queries couchbase info logo

Predictive Queries allow applications to run prediction queries against Couchbase Lite data using pre-trained machine learning (ML) models bundled along with the apps. The new Prediction functions allow apps to combine real-time predictions made on real-time app input against data stored in the database.

High availability and disaster recovery
Community Edition Enterprise Edition
Automatic conflict resolution couchbase info logo

In Couchbase Mobile, document conflicts are automatically handled at the time of save using a predefined set of conflict resolution policies. The database is thus conflict free. This functionality removes the hassle of dealing with conflicts and saves disk space because conflicting revisions will no longer be stored in the database.

Custom conflict resolution couchbase info logo

As an enhancement to automatic conflict resolution, Couchbase Lite apps have the option of overriding the default conflict resolution policy by defining their own custom conflict resolver. If a custom resolver is not defined, Couchbase Mobile will fall back to the default policy.

Device-side replicas couchbase info logo

Device-side replicas support on-device failover by supporting replication between two local databases. This allows a Couchbase Lite replicator to store data on secondary storage, which is especially useful in scenarios where a user’s device is damaged and the data needs to be moved to a different device.

Community Edition Enterprise Edition
Pluggable user authentication in Couchbase Sync Gateway couchbase info logo

Sync Gateway supports OpenID Connect. This allows your application to delegate the authentication to a third-party authentication provider.

Fine-grained controls for role-based access control (RBAC) in Couchbase Sync Gateway couchbase info logo

Sync Gateway is the primary data access enforcement point for connected clients. Every document write gets processed by a user-defined JavaScript sync function that can be used to define the rules for data validation, data routing, and access control. This ensures that users can only access document(s) they have been granted access to.

Data transport over TLS couchbase info logo

All communication between Couchbase Lite clients and Sync Gateway is encrypted using transport layer security (TLS, also known as HTTPS or SSL). This not only encrypts data (including passwords and login tokens) against eavesdroppers, but also protects against man-in-the-middle attacks by verifying to the client that it’s connecting to the real server, not an impostor.

On-device data encryption couchbase info logo

In addition to securing data in transit, Couchbase Lite offers enterprise-grade security by allowing Couchbase Lite clients to encrypt local databases.

Sync Gateway log redactions couchbase info logo

Logs are critical for the supportability of the platform. However, logs may contain sensitive or personally identifiable information (PII), which would make it a challenge to share logs with the support team. WIth the log redaction capability, sensitive data is redacted during post-processing of the logs before it is uploaded to support.

Performance and scaling
Community Edition Enterprise Edition
Sync via WebSockets couchbase info logo

Our sync protocol is implemented as a messaging protocol layered over WebSockets. The protocol enables full-duplex message passing between hosts. The same protocol is used for edge to cloud replication between Couchbase Lite and Sync Gateway, peer-to-peer replication between Couchbase Lite clients, and database to database replication.

Delta Sync couchbase info logo

Delta Sync is the ability to replicate only the parts of the Couchbase Mobile document that have changed. This can result in significant savings in bandwidth consumption along with throughput improvements, especially when network bandwidth is constrained.

Advanced Sync Gateway cache configuration couchbase info logo

Enterprise customers can tune the Sync Gateway channel cache and revs cache settings that will best meet the needs of large-scale deployments.

Built-in High Availability of Import Processing couchbase info logo

Enterprise Customers can designate multiple Sync Gateway nodes to process writes coming in from Couchbase Server (aka “Import Processing)  without incurring the overhead of duplicate processing of the data stream by every designated node. That way, even if a node goes down, the other nodes can take over the import shard without incurring any downtime.

Linear Scaling of Import Processing couchbase info logo

Enterprise Customers can designate multiple Sync Gateway nodes to shard the processing of writes (aka “Import Processing) coming in from Couchbase Server. The throughput of the import writes linearly scale with the additional nodes. Enterprise customers can also  fine tune the configuration to optimize import processing for the size of their deployment.

Enhanced Write Scaling couchbase info logo

Enterprise Customers with large scale concurrent writes can reap the benefits of a series of write processing enhancements in the Sync Gateway including optimizations to marshaling and unmarshalling of JSON document body and configurable enhancements to caching of the documents in revision cache.

Get started now with the edition that’s right for you.