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PostgreSQL (2nd Edition) 2nd Edition

22 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 075-2063327562
ISBN-10: 0672327562
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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

PostgreSQL is the world's most advanced open-source database. PostgreSQL is the most comprehensive, in-depth, and easy-to-read guide to this award-winning database. This book starts with a thorough overview of SQL, a description of all PostgreSQL data types, and a complete explanation of PostgreSQL commands.

If you are a developer or an administrator, you'll love the chapter that explores PostgreSQL performance. The authors explain how PostgreSQL stores data on disk (and in memory) and how to measure and influence the effectiveness of PostgreSQL's caching mechanisms. You'll also learn how PostgreSQL generates and evaluates execution plans. The authors explain all of the query operators that can appear in the results of an EXPLAIN command, describing the performance implications of each operator as well as the conditions which will cause PostgreSQL to use that operator.

PostgreSQL is also a complete guide for the developer. Whether you're developing with C, C++, ODBC, Embedded SQL, Java, Tcl/Tk, Perl, Python or PHP, you'll find a comprehensive description of the PostgreSQL API for your language of choice. Easy to follow exercises will walk you through the development of working applications that fully demonstrate the features offered by each API. You will also find a chapter that describes the PL/pgSQL server-side procedural language, learning how to build triggers, functions, and stored-procedures. The authors have even included a chapter that walks you through the process of extending the PostgreSQL server with custom-written C functions and new data types. The accompanying web site, conjectrix, contains downloadable versions of all of the sample code and a wealth of PostgreSQL-related resources.

The last section of PostgreSQL was written for the PostgreSQL administrator. You will learn how to install PostgreSQL on Windows, Linux, and Unix systems, from source code or from pre-compiled installers. The authors have described all of the PostgreSQL configuration options (compile-time, startup, and on-the-fly). The chapter on PostgreSQL security describes all of the authentication protocols that you can choose from and describes how to secure your database, both internally and externally. If you have to support a multi-national environment, you will find the chapter on internationalization and localization to be invaluable.

You won't find a more complete guide to PostgreSQL anywhere. The authors have made PostgreSQL approachable by leading the reader from basic concepts to advanced features. Whether you're a database beginner or an advanced user, you will find this book a valuable addition to your library. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Korry Douglas is the Director of Research and Development for Appx Software. Over the last two decades he has worked on the design and implementation of an umber of high-level languages and development environments, and his work with a variety of database products (Oracle, Sybase, SQL Server, PostgreSQL, MySQL and mSQL) given him a unique understanding of the commonalities of, and differences between, databases.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 1032 pages
  • Publisher: Sams Publishing; 2 edition (August 5, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0672327562
  • ISBN-13: 978-0672327568
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 1.9 x 8.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,105,722 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

40 of 41 people found the following review helpful By Felix Sheng on January 31, 2007
Format: Paperback
This book lives up to it's claims for "the comprehensive guide to building, programming and administering postgresql databases". I'm a MySQL guy, but may have to do a little pgsql to support a third party app, so I was looking for a book that would bring me up to speed.

The quick review is this... I give this book 3 stars, because it's so huge and covers so much territory that, in my opinion, it does a middling job of it. I would have preferred a more focussed book. I think, given it's goal of being so comprehensive, it is about as good as it could be and if you really need to know everything - from sql, to developing extensions, to embedding this in your c/c++ programs and administering things AND want a single book that covers it this is probably the book for you. If you don't need quite that much, or are willing to go to more than one book to get it, I think you would be better served to look elsewhere.

The longer review...

Honestly, I don't know why books on databases almost invariably are terribly dry reads, but this book, following the odds, falls into that category. It's a hefty tome weighing in at about 1000 pages divided into 3 sections.

The first category, about a quarter of the book, is an introduction to sql and postgresql in particular. It does quite a nice job of introducing your standard sql commands, datatypes and basic administrative commands (like creating tables and the like). This part goes from basic to fairly advanced, covering topics like outer joins and creating new datatypes. I suspect it'll be review for those familiar with sql but reasonably usable for those delving into sql, even if they don't immediately understand all of the more advanced concepts.
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36 of 43 people found the following review helpful By Toomas Vendelin on December 11, 2005
Format: Paperback
This "complete reference" is a total mess. It took quite a while to find out how to stop the server otherwise than by "kill" command, because "Server startup and shutdown.....779" refers to a text block which says that "we'll explain it in the next chapter".

Also, buying a tome of 1000+ pages, you would probably (and rightfully) expect to find a complete syntax reference to such essential commands as CREATE TABLE. I didn't find one! There is only a brief introduction to the basic syntax.

Normally, books of such volume contain several appendixes in the end, like "PostgeSQL syntax", "Perl API syntax", etc. Not in this one.

The bottom line is, buy "Beginning databases with PostgreSQL" by Neil Matthew and Richard Stones. This book will get you started quickly and painlessly. This book is a bit over 600 pages, and is very clearly written.
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21 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Jack D. Herrington on April 27, 2004
Format: Paperback
I was surprised at how advanced this book was. It starts with the usual introduction to basic SQL access to PostgeSQL, then has a two chapters on data types and syntax, and then jumps straight into performance and extensions stuff. It then covers PL/pgSQL. The majority of the second section of the book is examples of writing for Postgres with various programming languages (e.g. C, C++, Java, Perl, PHP, Python, etc.)
I liked the advanced content, but I was looking for a book on Postgres basics. So I don't think I got the right thing. My advice to you is, check out the table of contents, and make sure you are getting the content you need. If you are looking for a basic Postgres reference, this is not going to have much content for you.
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23 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Maurice Reeves on March 22, 2003
Format: Paperback
I really enjoyed the work of Korry and Susan Douglas, opening the world of PostgreSQL to me. I'd not considered the database a viable contender for my needs until I opened this book and saw all of the goodies it had to offer. The book explains the details of PostgreSQL in enough detail to get you going without bogging you down in the details, and I appreciate that, except for one thing:
1. I would have liked more information about installing and using PostgreSQL on Windows. They discuss installing with Cygwin, but don't cover downloading from Postgres' site, or any of the quirks that come from using Postgres on Windows. This is I'm certain an oversight and something they will correct or add to the next edition of the book.
Also, I can do without YASI (yet another SQL intro). I know SQL, I own SQL In A Nutshell from O'Reilly, I'm more than capable of working with databases, and I'd much rather they just explain what's unique and different about PostgreSQL instead of reviewing the SQL syntax with me.
Still, all those being said, I find this book to be informative and worthwile.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By ueberhund VINE VOICE on July 6, 2003
Format: Paperback
A large section of the book goes into PL/pgSQL programming. Like Oracle's PL/SQL or SQL Server's T-SQL, PostgreSQL has it's own SQL programming language. The book discusses the basics of using PL/pgSQL in addition to more complex information (including cursors and triggers).
The next section of the book really go into examples of using PostgreSQL in specific development environments. Specifically, chapters are dedicated to the use of PostgreSQL in Java code (examples are provided in which JDBC connections are made), PHP and Perl, and even ODBC (for those of us using non-open source languages). I especially liked these chapters, as they really helped me see exactly how to implement database calls to PostgreSQL.
The last third of the book is really designed for database administrators. In this section, information is provided on doing everything you need to do from a DBA perspective on PostgreSQL. There is information on configuration, security, and internationalization. One section I particularly found useful was on things to watch out for when running PostgreSQL in a Windows environment (specifically during installation).
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