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Welcome to H2, the Java SQL database. The main features of H2 are:
Very fast, open source, JDBC API
Embedded and server modes; in-memory databases
Browser based Console application
Small footprint: around 1 MB jar file size
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This is my default test database for embedded use in Java EE applications. Supports both embedded on disk and completely in memory modes, where the disk based mode can optionally close the DB when the being shut-down. Includes an almost hidden graphical console that actually works pretty well.
Can't say too much about its performance, as I just use it for testing JPA code, but I guess performance is a little less important for embedded databses. There's also a server mode, but I never tried that.
full review »
Simple and functional database. Best for embedding!