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Pro SQL Server 2005 Database Design and Optimization Paperback – 1 May 2006

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 9 reviews
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
An essential guide for SQL Server database designers 1 Jun 2006
By Adam Machanic - Published on
Format: Paperback
If you need to learn how to design a SQL Server database the right way, from the bottom up (or top down, depending on your persective), you can do no better than this book.

The book starts with a solid introduction/refersher on basic database concepts, which brings the reader up to the required level to start thinking about issues such as normalization and data integrity -- extremely important issues if you value your data!

Past there, the book gets deep (very deep) into data modeling, including discussions of such important concepts as when to use surrogate keys, what kind of data constraints should be defined, and the increasingly important question of how best to secure your data.

The book closes with a few specialized, more advanced chapters, which I found to be especially interesting. These include a chapter on concurrency, "code-level architectural decisions" (really, best practices for writing great T-SQL), and finally a VERY useful chapter on database interoperability -- a must for those who have to make SQL Server talk to other DBMSs.

In short, I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to learn to be a great SQL Server database designer.
12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
A must-have 19 Jun 2006
By James A. Luetkehoelter - Published on
Format: Paperback
I have the 2000 version of this book, which I thought was outstanding. Not only does it have excellent content, but it's written as if you were sitting at a table talking to Mr. Davidson directly.

This updated version should be a staple on any database developer or administrator's bookshelf. There is a solid discussion of design, securing the database (new encryption capabilities of 2005) and much more. But these aren't the reasons why you should own this book. It is as much a "how-to" book as it is a "what-to" book. You get real advice, not just screenshots and step-by-step examples. I wish more books were written this way, as technical knowledge without a procedural "framework" is a recipe for disaster.

Do yourself a favor and make the investment. Personally I know that any custom database design course I teach from this point on will include this book as reference for my students.
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
A Database Design and Optimization "must-have".... 13 Aug 2006
By JMess - Published on
Format: Paperback
I highly recommend this book to anyone working with SQL Server 2005. The material presented is made more understandable (not to mention entertaining!) by the examples used by the author throughout the book. The new features for SQL Server 2005 that the author covers are very relevant to my job, especially Chapter 7, Securing Access to the Data. The continuity of the material presented is excellent. Each chapter serves as a reference guide to complex topics that the author successfully explains through a combination of expertise, experience and a sense of humor.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Great content but tons of printing errors 12 Jun 2009
By Robert Lee White II - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
I have no idea if I just somehow got a screwed up copy of the book, but it has a ridiculous number of errors. On the first page of chapter 3, there is a big blank spot with a copyright at the bottom for Dilbert. And then in the intro text he references the comic that is supposed to be there. How in the world did that happen???

Even worse are the errors that deal with actual DB design. On p. 49, the big heading near the bottom of the page is "Optional Identifying Relationship," which is impossible in DB theory (and practice). So I stared at that for a second and read the text below the heading and couldn't get it to add up. But then on the very next page there is "Note: You might be wondering why there is not an optional identifying relationship..." and he explains the reasons they can't exist. So the heading was a misprint! It was supposed to say "Optional NON-Identifying Relationship." Gah! That's a really bad misprint or really bad editing! And I've run into probably at least 10 errors like this (though not as bad) in the first 100 pages of the book. That's bad!

I really hope it's the case that I just got some really strange copy or pre-edited version (I got the book as a hand-me-down), because the content in general I like. I'm going to go buy the 2008 version and hope for the best, because I can't stand reading the whole book being skeptical and constantly looking out for errors.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Basic to medium level coverage of best SQL DB design for performance 16 Jan 2009
By Jaewoo Kim - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is catered to those who have only rudimentrary knowledge of SQL database design. If you not certain what the 3 normal forms of normalizations are, then this book is for you.

If you, however, have a fairly good grasp of database design and want to have a deeper understanding of complex database designs of at least 500 tables or more, then this book leaves a lot wanting. For experts this book is not.

The best, and the most advanced chapters, were "coding for concurrency" and "table structure and indexing", which explain, in good detail, how to make a database less prone to locking contention and how to increase its performance.

As with many books on database designs, I felt many of the concepts, such as 3 normal forms, were not explained particularly well. In fairness to to the authors, it is not easy to explain the 3 normal forms in concise and easy to understand logical language.

I would recommend this book for beginners. Not so much to the mid-level database designers and above.
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