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on May 3, 2001
Are you desiring to become a competent DBA, pass the related MCP exam, get hands on experience with and understand the general methodology of all features, or just dabble with some basic Transact SQL on SQL Server 2000 look no further. The book is written for persons with no to intermediate experience but the information contained within is applicable to all skill levels. The delivery of information is depicted in a clear and concise manner. The authors have definitely been around the block with previous versions of Microsoft SQL Server. Their experiences conveyed are instrumental in your present and future employment plus will save you valuable time that can be utilized more wisely elsewhere. My thoughts are if you desire to build a house you need to build a strong foundation first. If you don't you'll have ongoing structural problems and a leaking roof etc. This book will provide you with a strong foundation if you work through and apply its teachings. Prior to purchasing this book I've implemented and supported approximately thirty plus databases on Microsoft SQL Server 6x and 7 and one on 2000.
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on April 10, 2003
I have no doubt that the authors of this book are very experienced at development and admin of SQL Server 2000 and earlier versions. They covered all topics in sufficent breath and depth. However, I would only rate this book as adequate for the following 2 reasons:
1. There was a definate lack of organization to the way the material was presented. Quite often, there were non-sequeters: the text would be explaining some concept, but then suddenly there would be a paragraph on something quite unrelated (at least, I did not see the connection). The authors should have explained how the paragraph relates, or put it in a side-bar, or perhaps in another section. 'Stream of Consciousness' prose does NOT belong in a book providing technical instruction!
The book was also disorganized in the fact that concepts were often used before they were introduced or explained. I know this is necessary sometimes, but it should happen rarely, and an author should explain fully why they are doing it so the reader is not left to wonder if they missed something.
2. There were some errors in the code examples, not as much as in some computer books I have seen, but more than I think is acceptable. When I am paid to write code, I make damn sure it runs, and I hold authors of computer books to the same high standards. As a novice to T-SQL, I need to be able to examine CORRECTLY WORKING code examples; I really am not in a position to debug code in a langauge that I am just starting to learn.
Bottom line: this book is OK, but the authors need to do a better job at organizing their material before presenting it, and checking over their own code.
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on July 23, 2002
I am a mechanical engineer and have rolled my own applications and done much of the systems administration for twenty years for my small online services company. Working on an ambitious .NET project and with little previous experience with SQL Server, I wanted to get comfortable with the physical implementation of relational data bases while I was still doing the logical data base design using Embarcadero. This book met all my needs and was enjoyable to read.
The book has 850 pages and has a CD with a 120-day evaluation copy of SQL Server 2000. The code for the exercises is available for downloading from the SAMS site. The organization is chronological, with steps ordered pretty much as you would do them if you were installing, setting up and administering a new SQL Server installation. You should be comfortable in a Windows 2000 or NT environment and have done some prior work with a database before attempting this book which is written for computer professionals.
The book did not seem like a typical SAMS Teach Yourself book, which are very useful as tutorials but often poorly arranged and indexed as references. This book together with the exhaustive and detailed SQL Server Books Online (the Microsoft SQL Server manual on the CD) will be all of the references you will need for physical data base design and administration. You will need other references for logical design of a relational data base and for the other platform technologies such as ASP.NET and VB.NET that you may use to do a full application.
I was pleased with the exercises. Each stood alone for the most part, allowing me to jump around a bit and still do those exercises that were useful to me. I was also pleased with the section on security. Security is a subject that I usually dread, but here it was covered in some detail but very clearly.
The author is a senior Microsoft SQL Server team member.
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on March 18, 2003
This is a fantastic book for people who need a crash course in SQL Server 2K. The information is presented in a style that gives the reader the "bottom line" on how to perform a task, with enough information to explain what the reader is doing and why.
The book is also well-written, so if the reader is learning SQL Server on one's own, the reader should struggle very little.
This book also comes with a 120-day evaluation of SQL Server 2000, so the reader can easily perform the hands-on exercises in the book, as well as experiment on one's own.
Will this book make you a maven of SQL Server 2K? No, but this book will give you the information that you need to be a SQL Server Database Administrator.
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on February 18, 2001
If you are an absolute SQL Server 2000 beginner but understand (basically) what a database is, this is the book for you. I have no experience in programming or SQL, and I've been able to ramp up VERY quickly with SQL Server, creating databases, tables, queries, and stored procedures with ease using the examples. The book is clearly laid out and has good examples. However, it IS a book about the server itself, not programming SQL. It contains a great deal of information on using ALL of the features included in SQL Server 2000. If all you want to do is learn to do is write queries, you might want to skip this and go for a book with a more narrow focus. This book's treatment of SQL Server is very broad.
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on October 14, 2002
I've read the reviews here - some of which complain that it's not detailed enough - but I disagree. Technical books almost always fall short when it comes to detail about specific topics simply because there's a limit on how many pages one wants to wade through!! When one needs specific technical details about a topic, you don't pick up a "teach yourself in 21 days book". The book did an excellent job of accomplishing what it states -the users leaves with a solid overview of SQL Server, with adequate foundation laid to uncover other information needed. I was also pleasantly surprised to see the non-technical lingo used to cover database design basics as well - ambitious coverage, well done!
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on December 12, 2003
This is a well written book that covers a lot of the end you'll have a very clear understanding of SQL Server 2K from both the administration and programming perspectives.
I disagree with the other reviews posted on here about this book being too wordy or poorly organized. Perhaps those folks work for Oracle :-) There is a lot of material covered in this book, and for the most part, it's concise and doesn't adopt a condescending attitude towards the reader.
In my search to learn SQL Server, I've found this book to rank at the top for general coverage of most of the DBA and programmer/user topics you encounter.
Worth your time to read, and money to spend.
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on May 1, 2002
Many of the subjects treated were glossed over and/or not fully explained. The authors managed to eek out over 700 pages of text
with such stunning revelations the following paraphrase. "Computer information processes have made an decisive long-lasting effect on business all over the world." I don't know about you but I do not like shelling out many bucks to read that kind of tripe when what I wanted was specific information on SQL. The minute section on JOINS was particularly disappointing as it was unclear and badly written.
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on December 12, 2001
This book is excellent. Helped me pass the MCP exam. Originally started with the Exam Cram but that just covered topics superficially. This one goes in depth into the topics with plenty of examples. The scripts can be downloaded so you don't have to type the bigger examples. Very few errors compared to other books in this field. Has enough material to be a reference for a long time.
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on June 19, 2003
This is a very poorly written book. It wastes thousands of words telling the reader what it is going to tell you...and then...after all the build doesn't tell you as much as the built-in SQL help files. The writing is often obtuse, and sometimes cryptic. Microsoft's on-line help gives more information, more concisely. This book does not live up to SAMS books reputation.
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