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Sql Performance Tuning
by Peter Gulutzan and Trudy Pelzer
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A poorly performing database application can cost each user time, and have an impact on other applications running on the same computer or the same network. This book will help DBA's and programmers improve the performance of their databases. It is not an introduction to SQL, nor is it a tuning manual for a particular SQL implementation. It is a guide for users and programmers who want to improve SQL performance no matter what brand of SQL they use. It will provide tuning tips for common situations, such as how to change a query so it will go faster and how to shift work from the server to the client. All the ideas have been tested against the eight leading DBMS applications. Almost all large organizations and companies today run more than one type of database. This is the only book to cover database tuning for them.
From the Back Cover
SQL Performance Tuning is a handbook of practical solutions for busy database professionals charged with managing an organization's critically important data. Covering today's most popular and widely installed database environments, this book is an indispensable resource for managing and tuning SQL across multiple platforms.
Packed with tips, techniques, and best practices, this hands-on guide covers SQL commands and queries over a wide range of conditions and environments. Every facet of the SQL environment is covered, from concurrency control to optimizationâand every issue in between. The book includes an overview of each of the most widely used database management systems (DBMS) and provides tuning tips for common day-to-day situations.
Topics covered include:
Whether you are a programmer, consultant, or user, you will find SQL Performance Tuning an indispensable guide to optimizing SQL performance across today's popular database environments.
Throughout SQL Performance Tuning, ideas and techniques are tested on a variety of popular SQL environments, including IBM DB2, Informix, Ingres, InterBase, Microsoft SQL Server, MySQL, Oracle, and Sybase ASE. The book's practical examples are written in ANSI/ISO Standard SQL: 1999.
About the Author
Peter Gulutzan is a principal of Ocelot Computer Services Inc. in Alberta, Canada. Peter is a technical writer and computer programmer who has worked with SQL since 1986. With Trudy Pelzer, he has written three books, Optimizing SQL (CMP Books, 1994), Optimizing C with Assembly Code (CMP Books, 1995), and SQL-99 Complete, Really (CMP Books, 1999).
Trudy Pelzer is a principal of Ocelot Computer Services Inc. in Alberta, Canada. Trudy is a technical writer and computer programmer who has worked with SQL since 1986. With Peter Gulutzan, she has written three books, Optimizing SQL (CMP Books, 1994), Optimizing C with Assembly Code (CMP Books, 1995), and SQL-99 Complete, Really (CMP Books, 1999).
Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
A poorly performing database application can cost each user time and have an impact on other applications running on the same computer or the same network.
The purpose of this book is to help you improve the performance of your SQL database. It is not an introduction to SQL syntax, not a tuning manual for a specific SQL implementation, and not a guide to design or data modelling. Instead, we've written it for users and programmers who want to improve SQL performance, no matter what brand of SQL they use. In this book, you'll find tuning tips for common situations, such as, "How to change a query so it will go faster," "What an index does," and "Shifting work from the server to the client."
Rather than exploiting the unique features of a single DBMS, we're going to give you ideas that are good for all of the major SQL DBMSs. Client/server programmers and consultants need to appreciate what can happen when the DBMS changes, orÑthe most challenging situationÑthe DBMS is unknown. So we tested all the ideas in this book on eight well-known DBMSs.
A good DBMS already contains a good optimizer. Yet you have picked up a book that promises to help you do your own tuning. That means that either you don't know something . . . or you do know something.
You Don't Know that Your DBMS Is Good . . .
That could be true if you're a student or new on the job. That could be true especially if you're writing queries or programs that should work on more than one DBMS. You're most likely to encounter one of the following RDBMSs with the largest market shares (based on new license sales figures for the year 2001):
You might also run into DBMSs that are popular for Web work (like MySQL), for work with Borland products (like InterBase), for desktops (like Access), for mobile and Java interfacing (like Cloudscape), or for embedded systems (like Solid), or a host of small fry, like mSQL and gadfly. This book tries to be useful for the common denominator in all products. To use automotive analogies, it's not a "mechanic's guide to tuning the 1999 Cadillac" book, it's a "driver's guide to optimizing performance of modern cars" bookÑeven if you have a manual transmission.
You Know that Even Good Tools Work Better in Skilled Hands . . .
Everybody has heard of sluggish SQL queries, or even whole systems, that a heroic someone improved with small effort. Usually the improvement is small too, so we will avoid extravagant promises. But we will make you the following guarantees.
One accusation that could be leveled, and to which we plead guilty, is that some of our material is ad hoc advice instead of general principles. Of course! There are only a few general principles in DBMS optimization.
Instead of general principals, we will be looking at what can be done with what's likely to be at hand. If we descend sometimes to mere tips and warnings about traps, that's because we've seen over the years that examples of real situations can help people realize what the general rules are. As has often been observed, tips should be based on principles.
The DBMSs that we looked at while preparing this book include IBM DB2, Informix, Ingres II, InterBase, Microsoft SQL Server, MySQL, Oracle, and Sybase (MS Windows NT versions). Each was installed and tested using the default switches recommended in the vendors' instructions. To avoid favoring any vendor's idiosyncrasies, all SQL examples in this book are written in ANSI/ISO Standard SQL:1999. Host-language examples are written in C plus ODBC, or Java plus JDBC.
Your DBMS is your pal. We won't counsel you to subvert it, be paranoid about it, or insult it by assuming it's stupid. Rather, as you would with a pal, you should try to get to know it better, and help it to help you.
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