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Review of Real-World SQL-DMO

By Andy Warren,

Up until the publishing of this book there was really only one book on SQL-DMO (Professional SQL Server 7.0 Development Using SQL-DMO, SQL-NS & DTS) that wasn't that good and obviously didn't cover any of the changes to DMO in SQL2K. I'm pleased to say that this book is both good and provides some coverage of 2K objects. It's nice to have something to recommend when readers ask for a reference on the subject!

The book states you should know SQL Server, Enterprise Manager, how to use Books Online, have basic programming skills using VB6, and how to code using T-SQL. Fair requirements I think. I think one quibble I have is that a lot of users trying DMO for the first time will truly have 'basic' skills and a bit more coverage of objects and collections would have been a nice addition.

I was pleased to see a good chapter on backup and restore. This is where I got started and where I think most people start with DMO. Lots of code and they do a good job of comparing how tasks are done using EM versus doing the same task in DMO. The chapter on managing users and roles will also be very useful to new DMO coders. I wasn't as thrilled with the chapter on using DMO via the sp_oa~ automation procs. I'm not a big fan of those procs to start with and DMO is fairly heavy to be running in a proc (in my opinion). The chapter on jobs is very good. Jobs are fairly complex (think steps and multiple schedules!) and are also a good target for a DBA trying to solve business problems.

Replication has a chapter devoted to it - you could easily devote a book to using DMO to handle replication. In this case there is enough to get you interested but you'll end up having to explore on your own depending on what you're trying to accomplish. A chapter on "QALite", a clone of Query Analyzer, shows how to create the functionality using DMO. It's useful for the code sample, but in practice a lot of this would have been better implemented using ADO (again, in my opinion). The final chapter on scripting is also handy, I've used the scripting functionality a lot and you can bet you will too at some point!

Books runs 397 pages, no CD, retail is $49.99, cheaper at Amazon of course. It's a good book, worth buying and reading if you're wanting to learn DMO. Experienced DMO users won't find much new material here. Gets a solid 4 stars from me! I'm going to forward the review copy over to my friend Steve Jones who lately has been experimenting in DMO and see what he thinks about it.

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