How to Create a Website - Create-Website.org
A data driven website is either a website that uses a database to store captured information or a site that uses data from a database to dynamically build (assemble) web pages.
Most, but not all data driven websites are "authenticated" sites. An authenticated site requires that visitors identify themselves using a login ID and password.
Examples of data driven sites include Amazon, Hotmail and web banking websites.
It is much more complex to build a data driven website than a static website (i.e. "brochure ware") website. Fortunately, there are web authoring tools now available that can help you generate simple data driven sites using data from a structured databases, spreadsheet or XML data file.
There are many different types of database management systems (DBMS) that can be used in a data driven website. The one that is most widely used is MySQL. It runs on computers that have Unix and Linux operating systems. On servers that use a Windows based operating systems, SQL Server is popular.
When a request for a data driven web page is made by a web browser to a web server, the web server calls an application system (or server-side script) that in turn makes a request for data from the database.
If the request is successful, the data is formatted and passed back to the web server which integrates it with other website content. The resulting web page and related files (e.g. graphics) are then sent back to the web browser using the standard http communication protocol.