Since I get asked about using blobs vs. the file system for images a lot, and Andrew Chapman is easily the most qualified person I know of to answer it, I’ll just defer to him (he in turn defers to a MS research paper):

The conclusions from the technical report are…

  • Files less than 256KB are more efficiently stored in the database
  • Files larger than 1MB are more efficiently stored in the file system
  • Files between 256KB and 1MB could be stored in either – if in doubt store them on the file system.

It’s interesting that the reason to prefer blobs in the mid-range is because the file system can be defragmented, but the blobs cannot be.