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Review of SQL 2000 Fast Answers

By Andy Warren,

The author contacted me a couple weeks ago requesting that his book be put on our review schedule. Mostly I review books that I've decided to read on my own, but this one looked interesting enough to give it a try.

The intro gives a little background on how the book came to be, an outgrowth of pages of notes the author carried around that eventually needed to be organized. I think a lot of us can identify with that. Over time you pick up dozens (if not hundreds) of little tips that you know, but maybe the new developer or junior DBA doesn't know - how do you pass that information on?

The book in organized into 18 chapters covering most everything to do with SQL, within each chapter the format is "How to .....". Lot's of screen shots. I'm all in favor of this, lot easier for me to follow along if I don't have to stop to try to find the same place in Enterprise Manager or wherever to see what the tool looks like at that point in the process. Most of the "how to's" are short and sweet.

I browsed the book pretty thoroughly and was pleased to find a few things. One was a series of how-to's on moving logins and how to fix orphaned logins. Another was a note within a how-to on stored procs indicating that all DDL should be done early in the proc. Another was how to use triggers for auditing, discussing capturing all changes versus just tracking the modified date of the record. Another was how to use the maintenance plan history (rather than job history) to see why a plan failed. The book is also very current, covering the db chaining option included in SP3.

It's a big book, 980 pages. Easy on the eyes. Easy to follow. Runs about $42 right now at Amazon. While I guarantee that everyone will find something in the book they didn't know, I think the real value is that here is a book you can pull out and give someone when they say ask "how do I....?" and they can get what they need in a few pages, not have to read the entire chapter.

The publisher, Curlingstone, is being liquidated, but the author is providing the downloadable files for the book directly from his site.

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