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Practical PostgreSQL Paperback – January 17, 2002

2.7 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Command Prompt began in late 1997 as an Internet application development firm. Command Prompt originated as an after hours company working with PostgreSQL, Perl, and PHP. In January of 2000, Command Prompt became Command Prompt, Inc. Command Prompt currently specializes in advanced web based application development using PostgreSQL and languages such as PHP, C++, Perl, and Java. Their primary efforts have been in the development of their PostgreSQL Application Server, LXP (included with this book) and specialized development, such as e-fullfillment systems.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 640 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media (January 17, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1565928466
  • ISBN-13: 978-1565928466
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 1.2 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 2.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,498,213 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
O'Reilly generally does a pretty good job, but it seems like they spent very little time on this book. The "practical" examples in it are pretty useless, and you can glean just as much through a simple web search.
Just wanted to warn about one thing here:
The absolute worst part of this book is the index (which is a _very_ important part of any tech book). The one listing they have under the letter K: "keywords". What about keys? A SQL book that doesn't have an index entry for keys? There's not even any "H" listing... hashes?
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By A Customer on February 12, 2002
Format: Paperback
I was hoping to finally get a good book on PostgreSQL. I guess I'll keep waiting. Want specifics? The index is entirely useless (3 pages for 600+ pages of book). Incomplete data type listing and description (at least I haven't found any discussion of the old large object handling or the bytea type yet). Good things? While easily found elsewhere (like in the included documentation for PostgreSQL), the chapters on PostgreSQL Administration are adaquate as is the chapter on postgresql clients. The advert...err..chapter on LXP is pretty much fluff, as is the command reference that takes up the last hundred or so pages, thus reducing the useful pagecount to about 450.
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Format: Paperback
The book covers the basics of PostgreSQL, but it lacks usefull info for the more avanced tasks like tuning the database.

The 'stored procedure' (PL/pgSQL) chapter was for me the only interesting part of this book for me.

When I bought this I was hoping for the PostgreSQL 'Bible', but it was a big dissapointment.

My advice for improvement for the next release:

- much better index

- drop LXP chapter

- chapter about how to tune (not just SQL statements, but the postgreSQL server itself) and benchmark PostgreSQL.

- a chapter about 'schema' and when to use them.

- extend PL/pgSQL chapter with some 'real world' examples and how to do PL/pgSQL trouble shooting, PL/Perl(?)

- general advice how to manage PostgreSQL on 'day to day' basis

- maybe have a chapter about the SLONY replication add-on

- Postgresql 8.0 features
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Format: Paperback
This is definitely the worst book by O'Reilly I have ever seen. It is an advertisment for a strange thing called LXP but nothing more. I love PostgreSQL and I have used it for years but this book is absolutely inadequate. It does not go into detail and is absolutely no use for somebody who wants to work with the database professionally.
I cannot recommend this book.
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Format: Paperback
For beginnners to postgreSQL , this book has a decent coverage. I will bet there is nothing to beat the Momjian online PostgreSQL reference. I have learnt
more than practical postgreSQL from Bruce.It's a sheer waste of your money.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I ordered this book thinking that it would provide the information necessary to setup PostgreSQL and interface to it via Perl. It was somewhat useful on the first count but Perl doesn't even have a listing in the index.
Speaking of the index, it is surely the poorest one I've encountered in any O'Reilly or other computer reference book I've ever seen or considered buying. It fills only 3 pages front and back. This is a 600+ page book mind you. Because of the poor index you will probably spend more time flipping through pages or using the table of contents which is rather scant as well.
It is too bad that I bought this book by mail order because if I had been able to inspect it in a bookstore, I would've never bought it. The documentation that comes with PostgreSQL is more than adequate to get it installed and working. If you are looking to use Perl as your front-end language, your time and money would probably be better spent on "Programming the Perl DBI" by O'Reilly.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I came from a mySQL environment, so I had some SQL experience before tackling PostgreSQL. Basically, I breezed over the book, and when creating my data base, I remembered what the DB was able to do, and looked more closely at the parts of the book that I needed.
RE LXP, while obscurity is certainly no reason to discount something, I see no reason to go so deep into coverage of this language, when things like PHP are so much more widely used for such purposes. A far better use of those pages would have been a small discussion on DB structure and logic, and general guidelines on how to set things up efficiently. That, and a more specific description of the configuration variables before compiling the DB, preferrably going over when you would need to use those options.
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Format: Paperback
This book used to be a good reference for PostgreSQL 7.4. However there is much more to PostgreSQL nowadays then it was six years ago.

This book has a problem that I guess most SQL books suffer from. It has a very long introduction to SQL itself. Which is not bad if you are a complete beginner. The book is somewhat boring to read, without that additional value because of which you buy a book. It lacks additional information on advanced PostgreSQL features, programming in PL/pgsql, replication, administration and some other interesting topics. On the other hand it's not that "practical" but rather a PostgreSQL reference.

All in all this book has too much reference which makes it hard to read. With that and the fact it is somewhat outdated, you might want to decide on skipping it.
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