The Python programming language can be used in a variety of applications across various domains, including web development. Django and Flask are two very popular open-source web frameworks that are synonymous with Python web development. Web frameworks are software tools that help develop web applications by providing standards for building maintainable, reliable, and scalable web applications. Each framework has its features and benefits, so how to choose a web framework between Django vs Flask for your web application? This post will compare specific features between the two frameworks so that you can decide which web framework is more suitable for your web application.
Introduction to Django
Django is a high-level Python web framework that focuses on the principle “don’t repeat yourself.” It is a full-stack web framework that follows a Model-Template-View (MTV) software design. Django aims to simplify the web development process by enabling programmers to accomplish most of their development without the use of third-party tools and libraries. To sum it up, Django bundles everything together with what a programmer might need to build a web application.
Introduction to Flask
Flask is a lightweight and more explicit web application micro-framework that focuses on “a small core and easy-to-extend” philosophy. Flask is modular and allows greater flexibility to the programmer to rapidly build a simple web application.
Django vs Flask
Django includes an ORM that supports popular relational databases such as – SQLite, PostgreSQL, MySQL and, Oracle, making it easier to deal with database functionalities. Flask allows for more freedom by making no assumptions on how the data is stored or dealt with and hence is more suitable for NoSQL databases such as MongoDB.Giving more flexibility to the user however, increases the chances of errors and bugs.
Django provides a well-defined and conventional structure for web application development. This makes Django suitable for larger projects that aim to be further expanded in the future. Furthermore, Django comes with an in-built admin panel allowing greater management of large projects. Flask has an arbitrary structure for projects making it more suitable for smaller projects with stringent requirements.
Flask is modular and does not have a specific layout with multiple layers such as Django. This makes Flask’s performance marginally better than Django. However, this difference is negligible when accounted for user input and output. Therefore, both frameworks have comparable performance capabilities.
While Django aims to be a “batteries-included” web framework, Flask allows the programmer more freedom when it comes to using external packages. Django has over four thousand in-built packages making it unlikely to need to rely on third-party packages to develop a web application. Flask has a minimalistic approach to inbuilt libraries, which allows for greater flexibility and extensibility. Hence, if Django is a toolbox then Flask is a hammer.
Django provides built-in protection to prevent security attacks such as cross-site scripting, cross-site forgery, and SQL injection. Meanwhile, the Flask-Security library provides some protection against data leaks and other web attacks. Flask’s smaller codebase provides an advantage for greater security measures however since it is a more flexible web framework that may depend on third-party packages, it remains vulnerable through them. Hence, Django provides a more secure upfront while Flask requires greater monitoring of the third-party applications it uses.
Both the communities revolving around Django and Flask are very active. Django was initially released in 2005 while Flask was first released in 2010, making Django the older framework around. In the open-source community, Django has had 2089 developers while Flask has had 669 developers’ contributing to these projects since their inception, according to https://www.openhub.net/. According to Stack Overflow trends, at the beginning of 2020, Django related questions posted on the website were 1.8% of all questions while Flask related questions comprised of around 0.5% of all questions. Comparatively, Django has a wider community that continues to develop and help build on this project.
Django provides the mechanism to handle a huge amount of data in real-time making it popular among high-traffic websites. The most popular Django projects include – Instagram, Spotify, Dropbox, and Mozilla. However, as the web development industry tends towards smaller frameworks, serverless platforms, and microservices, Flask has gained a lot of popularity over recent years. Popular Flask applications include – Airbnb, Netflix, Lyft, and Reddit.
The choice of web framework completely depends on the requirements of the web application to be developed. Hopefully, this post has been able to provide some information to help decide between Django vs Flask. Most commonly, Flask applications are single-page applications useful for static websites such as personal blogs or forums. Additionally being a light-weight framework,Flask is also preferred for building APIs. Meanwhile, Django is more suitable for larger fully featured projects involving dynamic web pages such as e-commerce websites or content management systems.
Therefore, while Django comes as an everything-included web framework, Flask provides the bare minimum and is meant to be extended for flexibility. Still, confused about which framework your web application would be more suitable with? FavTutor is always here to provide you with help from expert tutors 24/7. Get started by sending a message through the chat on the bottom right. Happy programming!