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78 Reviews
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4.0 out of 5 stars I found this book to be excellent and forced much thought
I initially skimmed this book looking for highlights. I've referred many developers to a section or chapter in this book when they are trying to perform T-SQL gymnastics like unequal joins, locating missing data, understanding instead of triggers, etc. This isn't a book for beginners. Make sure you have a firm grasp of T-SQL and then give yourself time to read this...
Published on Dec 10 2001 by Michael Hotek

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3.0 out of 5 stars I found the book to be useful
After reading some of the negative reviews on here, I almost didn't buy this book. I'm a Transact SQL beginner, though, so whether a book with "Advanced" in the title isn't actually advanced doesn't matter to me. I think there's room for beginner books in the market, too.
I am a seasoned coder that just started a new job and needed to get up to speed on...
Published on March 17 2002 by Sarah Bonner


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4.0 out of 5 stars I found this book to be excellent and forced much thought, Dec 10 2001
By 
Michael Hotek (mssqlserver.com United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000 (Paperback)
I initially skimmed this book looking for highlights. I've referred many developers to a section or chapter in this book when they are trying to perform T-SQL gymnastics like unequal joins, locating missing data, understanding instead of triggers, etc. This isn't a book for beginners. Make sure you have a firm grasp of T-SQL and then give yourself time to read this book in chunks. Yes, I found some errors in the code samples. But, I don't blindly run code from a book. This is a book designed to teach you many finer points of T-SQL and apply them to real world problems. If the code doesn't work, apply what the authors are teaching you and rewrite it. Way too many people just dismiss it as "beneath them", "not advanced", "rehash of BOL", etc. I doubt any of them even put forth the effort required to understand what Tom and Itzik are trying to teach you. This is a book that will require you to think, but at the end of the road you will be miles ahead of your counterparts in your understanding of T-SQL. There isn't enough room for an exhaustive treatment, but the authors present T-SQL in a way that pushes you well beyond "memorize and regugitate" and certainly allows you to apply T-SQL in ways you would have thought were not possible. T-SQL is a simple language, but it is extremely complex in this simplicity. Thank you Itzik and Tom for deepening my understanding.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Lots of good, more not-so-good, May 1 2004
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This review is from: Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000 (Paperback)
On the positive side, there are numerous interesting Transact SQL techniques demonstrated in this book. A couple of them have proved to be very useful to me. I like the exploration of different challenges people face with Transact SQL and the solutions the authors provide.
I also like the catalog nature of the book. APress is getting better at this with their books, and this one is pretty good as a reference.
On the negative side, the language is misued often in this book. As the old saying goes, "When all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail." There are several problems attacked in this book that would be better solved with a language other than Transact SQL. It is simply the wrong tool. I could offer several examples, but the most obvious one would be the complex numbers discussion. I see others have mentioned this, too. Not only are complex numbers not best handled by Transact SQL, they cannot even be accurately handled by the language. You will quickly become the victim of rounding errors, performance problems, and other devils if you try something like this in production code.
Another negative is that authors don't write that well. I have come not to expect a lot from technical books, so I don't think this is that big of a deal. But I would have to say that the writing quality in this one is low even for technical books. For one thing, the two write completely differently and you can see the different styles contrasting in different sections of the book. Add to this the fact that neither style is particularly lucid or engaging, and you have a book that is an editor or two short of being cogent and readable.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A commentary on Critiques:, Feb. 16 2004
By 
Andrew J. Bradford (Frederick, MD United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000 (Paperback)
A common theme among the negative critiques, is the use of the word "Advanced" in the book's title. Personally, i think the authors should simply have chosen a different title, and half of the negative comments would have been subdued. (Something to signify the apparent intent of the authors, such as "An anthology of T-SQL", or "A Comprehensive Introduction to T-SQL" ...) "Advanced" of course is to some extent a product of one's own thinking, and experience. Another aspect to this subject of "Advanced" has to do with the totally hackneyed, over-worked use of the term "Guru." Someone / something can in fact be "Advanced", and NOT be in the realm of "Guru." This term is COMPLETELY over-used, and over-applied. There are in fact but a very FEW "Guru's" out there in the 'Real World' (Ken Henderson being one.) A Guru is a unique, creative combination of high native intelligence, tireless enthusiasm, and indeterminate hours of true, Hands-On Experience, with the product. A Guru can be identified as someone who ALWAYS seems to know more about the topic, no matter what he/she is asked or challenged with. (As an aside....a "Guru" is NOT always a great, or even good, author ... or, communicator to humans, in general ... although this particular talent definitely is advantageous!) In short, evaluate a product, such as a computer book, on its merits, applicability to the task at hand, and value to YOU. Take with a GIANT grain of salt, any negative critique(s) before choosing .... esp. those propagated from a SINGLE source masquerading as MULTIPLE people!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Crisp, clear and very practical..., June 19 2003
By 
V. Shigaev (Arlington, VA United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000 (Paperback)
This is the most reliable and advanced source of information about TSQL for me. I love this book. It's examples are crisp, clear and very practical. Great job!
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1.0 out of 5 stars Complete waste of my time, April 9 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000 (Paperback)
I don't know about you, but doing complex numbers in T-SQL doesn't interest me in the least, especially when the computations are inaccurate and incredibly slow. The whole book is a waste of time. We get to learn how Itzik's code formatting style differs from Tom's (who cares -- who the heck is either of these guys?) We get to learn how neat it is to run into someone with the same first name. And we get to hear about Itzik's martial arts master (really interesting stuff... not). I am returning this one for a refund.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Laughably bad, Jan. 11 2003
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This review is from: Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000 (Paperback)
The book is horrible. From the first page to the last, there's no end to the nonsense. Who cares about Itzik's martial arts instructor? Who cares about whether he met someone with the same name? And the examples...sheesh! Most are either too simple to be really useful (lots of fantasy world scenarios) or get off into things no one cares about. The book was a complete waste of money and I'm returning it!
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1.0 out of 5 stars Techniques borrowed from other books, Jan. 11 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000 (Paperback)
Almost every technique I've seen in this book can be found in other books. I can't think of any off the top of my head that I haven't seen before. A good number of these are in Henderson's and Klein's books. I wouldn't waste my time with this one. Get the original source books, instead.
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5.0 out of 5 stars One of the Best TSQL books, Jan. 5 2003
By 
Bharat Karia (West Roxbury, MA United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000 (Paperback)
I have followed Itzik Ben-Gan's columns in SQL Server Magazine and I found his articles addressing some of the trickier problems frequently faced by SQL developers. The solutions presented have almost always been very elegant and changed one's perspective of looking at a whole class of problems.
This book is distilled from a lot of those very clever articles from SQL Server Magazine [and then some] and I heartily recommend this book to tickle your SQL senses. [I am very surprised with the number of negative reviews for this book, believe me, it does not deserve it].
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5.0 out of 5 stars One of the better ones I have seen, July 2 2002
This review is from: Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000 (Paperback)
I have been writing SQL for a few years, and I have almost every book on TSQL. When I glanced over this book, I thought it was pretty good, but I waited until I saw the reviews on Amazon.com to get a second opinion. As the reviews were mostly negative, I did not buy the book back then.
Then some time later and with some spare money in hand, I got to the bookstore and this was the ONLY book on TSQL that I did not already own. So I caved in and bought it. This was a very wise move! The help given to me by this book has made it a more than worthwhile investement. I have over 10 SQL servers and have to maintain and write code for all of them. This books has been extraordinary help.
I you know very little of SQL, do not buy this book, get an intro book instead. But if you have "some" experience with SQL, then this is a great book to get deeper into TSQL. I will change the way you write code and make you a better TSQL developer.
Which leads me to wonder about the SQL capabilities of the writers of those negative reviews.... hum ;-)
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1.0 out of 5 stars Not advanced - not written very well - pretty sloppy, June 17 2002
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This review is from: Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000 (Paperback)
Can't believe I actually bought this book. Gotta be one of the worst ones I ever laid down my own money on. Terrible piece of work. Examples don't run. Explanations don't make sense. Nothing very educational or helpful about any of it.
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Advanced Transact-SQL for SQL Server 2000
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