Actian Zen Edge Database

Zero-Administration, Embedded, Nano Footprint DBMS

New! Zen Edge Database for Raspbian and Windows IoT Core



Hybrid NoSQL/relational database for superfast transactions and standard SQL access.

Zero Admin

Zero Administration

Set it and forget it – no DBA required – completely hidden from the end user.

Small Footprint

Small Footprint

Requires 40 MB or less. Developer configurable installation to cherry-pick components, silent install and more.

What is Actian Zen Edge Database?

Actian Zen Edge Database is the most reliable, small-footprint, low-maintenance, high-performance database management system (DBMS) in the world. Actian Zen combines NoSQL and relational access for the perfect blend of performance and standard access. Zero DBA design and fantastic backward compatibility mean that ISVs support costs are dramatically reduced.

Check out the newest edition – Zen Edge Database. Footprint under 40MB, available on Raspbian and Windows IoT Core, with support for ARM and Intel. Download a trial. Read the Zen IoT press release.

Read the ZDNet article: Actian and the Zen of IoT Maintenance


Zero-maintenance, Embedded, Small Footprint Database

Actian Zen Edge Database is the perfect solution for software developers and manufacturers delivering business critical applications in low or no IT environments. It is one of the most reliable, low maintenance, high-performance database management systems in the world.

Lots of extras

Large Database Features at an Affordable Price

Cost-effective Actian Zen offers full security, encryption, management and monitoring tools, plus a host of other features you would expect to see in a much more expensive DBMS product.


Stability and Reliability

There’s no doubt why the Windows desktop accounting market uses Actian Zen as the database of choice. Actian Zen’s reputation is based on rock solid reliability.


Data Portability

Actian Zen shares a common data type and file format across all Zen database products, so accessing and moving data between an ARM device (like a Raspberry Pi) and Windows or Linux servers requires none of the typical ETL overhead. Just copy files and go.

Exceptional Support

Ready for Cloud or SaaS

If your application is running on a VM as part of a public, private or hybrid cloud, or if your application is deployed in a way that you don’t want to count or can’t count users, Actian Zen Vx Server has the right license model for you.


Backwards Compatibility

Actian has an over 30-year history of reliable database upgrades. Actian Zen delivers years of backward compatibility, making moves to new versions a snap.

portal management

Zero Database Administration

Set it and forget it. Most SMBs don’t have or want a DBA. Actian Zen Embedded database is built for environments where users don’t have the resources to manage a database. We don’t require consultants and don’t need constant DBA supervision. Actian Zen just runs, and runs, and runs.

Performance Optimized

New Tech with No Changes to Your Application

Actian Zen enables ISVs to take advantage of new hardware architecture, OS platforms, and computing environments (64-bit, multi-core, VM, Cloud) without application changes. If your customer base is in the tens of thousands, enabling moves to new platforms with no new application code is a game changing advantage.


VM Live Integration

VM Live Migration

Enhanced virtual machine licensing provides live migration capability for all currently shipping editions. That makes it easier to manage Actian Zen applications in VMware and Hyper V environments.



Database files can be defragmented without any engine down time. Reads and writes can operate continuously during defragmentation. Improve application performance without taking Actian Zen databases offline.

Unicode Support

Unicode Support

Expanded multilingual support by providing SQL storage for wide-character data. Actian Zen provides access to Btrieve data in the form of new relational types NCHAR, NVARCHAR and NLONGVARCHAR and includes a new ODBC Unicode Interface driver.


NoSQL Access

Actian Zen includes several different SDKs to allow developers direct access to the data without going though a relational layer. This enables very fast access and very quick insert, update and delete performance.


SQL Access

Actian Zen provides both NoSQL and SQL access to a single set of data. For ISVs adding more flexible reporting features, direct access via ODBC, JDBC, and support for ADO.NET and Embarcadero developers means ISVs have a wide range of choices for SQL access.

Customized Install

Customized Installation

Many ISVs building applications for small business users want to hide the complexity of a database from their users. An Actian Zen installation can be hidden in the ISV application (silent install), and the developer can cherry-pick the components needed to eliminate unneeded features or keep footprint to a minimum.

Actian Zen Editions

Zen Enterprise database for Windows, Linux, and Mac OS

6 – 500 Users
Client/Server configuration useful for mid sized office to enterprise. Includes Vx Server (unlimited users) for SaaS, Cloud or applications where licensing by the number of users or cores is a challenge.

Zen Workgroup database

1-5 Users
Low cost edition ideal for small and branch offices.

Zen Edge database for IoT

1-10 Users
Reduced footprint for Raspbian and Windows IoT Core. Ideal embedded solution for IoT developers working with low cost commodity hardware like Raspberry Pi and other single board computers.

Add-On Software

Backup Agent

Set and manage Continuous Operations on your open database files so that your data is still available from your application during your backup. Once the backup procedure is complete, stopping Backup Agent automatically takes the files out of Continuous Operations and rolls in all the changes captured during the backup.


Provides a secure audit trail with a comprehensive logging system that captures the full range of events in your database and stores database records before and after changes occur, whether the transactions originate from third-party applications or from direct changes to data.


Meets your most important data replication needs. DataExchange Real-Time Backup Edition manages remote backup of key application data to reduce disaster-related downtime. DataExchange Data Synchronization Edition maintains a consistent set of data across multiple applications.

Use Cases

Actian Zen database family supports both NoSQL and SQL database access, giving developers the ability to deliver performance for embedded business applications and provide flexibility and standard SQL access for reporting and BI features.


Relational Data Access using SQL:

  • Flexible architecture that scales from single-user environments to large client/server systems without additional coding
  • Full support for SQL
  • Direct ODBC and JDBC access to the database engine

Operational Benefits

Provides. Scalability, maintenance-free operation, backward compatibility with multiple versions and reliable, simple upgrades.
Standard Interface. SQL and ODBC
Speed. Actian Zen speaks native ODBC, so your application needs no ODBC adapter code, saving execution time.
Scalability. Scale applications from single-user to large client/server environments without changing the application or the database
Small Memory Footprint. Actian Zen has a small footprint, requiring only a small amount of memory.

Developer Features

Bundling Actian Zen with your application is easy with the distribution component, which provides multi-user and single-user run-time support
Application scalability from standalone to client/server
Fully functional Workgroup and client/server engines
Declarative Referential Integrity
Named database support to provide location transparency for applications
Comprehensive, industry-standard data type support

NoSQL Access:

  • Direct data access without relational overhead
  • Multiple developer APIs
  • Exceptional transaction performance

Business Critical from the Enterprise to the Branch Office to IoT

Hundreds of thousands of customers rely on  Actian Zen based applications to run their business every day. Reliability, low TCO and zero-dba characteristics are why Actian Zen embedded databases have been the choice of global ISVs  and end-users selling and supporting business critical applications to SMB’s, enterprises and everyone in between.

Thomson Reuters

“Vx Server is a good fit for ISVs, OEMs, and IT users who wish to implement an orderly migration to the cloud. It provides the tools, the technology, and the licensing model to make the cloud implementation of a database simple. It is designed to accommodate the customer’s environment of choice, whether that is: – On a server in the data center – In a private cloud – In the public cloud – In a hybrid cloud environment.”

– Robin Bloor, The Bloor Group

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