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Is there a use for both Force.com and Database.com simultaneously?


To expand on my question: if you have an existing salesforce.com/force.com implementation, under what circumstances would you have a need for database.com?


I've been reading a few posts regarding database.com, and the general consensus seems to be that the only time you would use database.com is if you wanted to develop an application in another language other than force.com.  If you have an existing saleforce/force.com instance, there is little need for database.com, you would just use your existing force.com database.


Consider this use case:


You want your end users to be able to associate records in salesforce.com with records that are in a homegrown system (on top of a SQL database, lets say).  You've determined the best way to do this is to replicate all of the records in a staging database that allows for easy association to salesforce records.


Is there an advantage to setting up a database.com instance to be the staging database, as opposed to just loading them into your existing salesforce instance?  I'm thinking along the lines of mitigating space/scalability/cost concerns considering that you may get into hundreds of thousands of records in the future.


Did you ever come to a good conclusion on this? I have a Force.com instance that just hit 1GB and additional storage costs 5x as much as it does on Database.com.


There's a lot more data I'd like to add to our app but carrying costs will be too high.


Also, if you have data in Database.com, is there a native way to access it from Force.com Apex? Or do you have to use a SOAP or REST API?