Chapter 2 — SQL Server tools for maintaining data integrity

To be perfectly honest this is the very first chapter I’ve sat down and read to completion and MAN am I glad I did. If this chapter is any indication of the kind of content in the rest of the book I’m going to start buying up copies just to hand out for contests and talks (no, I’m not iPad-hyping this, it really is that good).

First off I really enjoy the way Louis Davidson writes. The style of the writing is very clear which makes a topic you’d think wouldn’t be that exciting (I have a feeling I’ll take flak for that comment but bear with me here folks) and compel you to keep reading. Louis does a great job of explaining the basics of the built-in protection tools like data types, NULL specifications, various constraint types, and triggers. Each section on the different tools is easy to understand so this is fantastic for those just starting out to those who have been in the field for years and either want to brush up on basics or better understand what and why these tools are in place.

For someone like me who isn’t currently devoted full-time to my DBA work and has dabbled in some development work here I thought this was a great chapter and will refer to it when doing any development work in the future to make sure I’m not doing anything too stupid. Also, the way this chapter is written it makes a great primer if you have a junior DBA in house looking to learn. Just let them borrow your MVP Deep Dives book and let them read this chapter and by the time their done they should have a good grasp of the importance of database constraints and data integrity and why we, as DBA’s, must remain ever vigilant for certain design failures like the one Louis outlines in the opening paragraph where he talks about a database with only tables: no constraints, no relationships, no nothing.

My name is Jorge Segarra. I’m an MCTS (SQL Server 2005) living and working in Tampa, Florida with my beautiful wife, dog and three cats. I currently work as a SQL DBA and system administrator for a non-profit hospital in Tampa, Florida. In addition to being a member of the Tampa SQL Server, Tampa SQL Server Business Intelligence, and VMware user groups I am also a Hypervisor for the PASS Virtualization Virtual Chapter and lead the PASS Professional Development Virtual Chapter. I blog at http://sqlchicken.com and you can find me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/sqlchicken


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