SQL Server 2000 for the Oracle DBA

Book Review

SQL Server 2000 for the Oracle DBA
by Christopher Kempster
Copyright 2003
Publisher’s Website

At first glance, the title of this book may seem a little strange. Why would an Oracle DBA be interested in SQL Server 2000? Actually, there are lots of reasons, as SQL Server 2000 is making a lot of in-roads in the database market, often co-existing with Oracle in the same organization. In other cases, companies are dropping Oracle for SQL Server, so Oracle DBAs are finding themselves having to learn SQL Server 2000 (if the want to keep their job). While there are a lot of good beginner’s books on SQL Server 2000, this one is unique because it is written from an Oracle DBA’s perspective, making it the “perfect” first book about SQL Server for them.

Rather than being designed to be read from beginning to end, this book is designed more for a quick reference, instead of teaching SQL Server 2000 basics using a tutorial format. This makes sense, as Oracle DBAs should already know the basics of database management. What they are interested in is how SQL Server 2000 is different from Oracle, which this book does a good job of. Readers can jump immediately to the section they are most interested in, and read what they need to know without having to wade through information they don’t need.

Throughout this book, the author does a good job of explaining the differences between SQL Server 2000 and Oracle terminology, which is a confusing subject because both vendors often use the same terms to mean different things. For example, the meaning of “instance” in SQL Server 2000 means something quite different to an Oracle DBA.

The books 361 pages does a good job of covering all the core SQL Server 2000 topics that Oracle DBAs would be interested in. Here’s what the book covers:

  • SQL Server Architecture 101

  • Installation

  • GUI and Command Line Tools

  • Backup & Recovery

  • Transactions and Locking

  • Performance Tuning

  • High Availability

  • Globalization Services (NLS)

  • OLAP

  • Scripts and Scheduled Jobs

  • Managing Databases

  • SQL & T-SQL

  • Networking SQL Server

  • Security

Notice that this book has a chapter on Performance Tuning, which is great. It summarizes most of the keys things an Oracle DBA would need to learn about SQL Server 2000 performance tuning, and how it is different from performance tuning Oracle.

Because this book is an e-book (in the PDF format), it is easy to search the entire book, looking for specific information. Also, in can be installed directly on your computer, making it a very quick and handy reference.

I highly recommend this book to any Oracle DBA that is making the move to SQL Server 2000. It is a great reference and will make the transition by DBAs from Oracle to SQL Server 2000 very easy and painless.




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