SQL Server 2005 Book Reviews

Now that my SQL Server 2005 presentation is over, I have time to write reviews of the books I used to gather my material! My two primary resources were:

As you have probably noticed, both books have a developer focus. The reason for this is twofold. First, the presentation was for the Fort Wayne .NET user group, a group consisting primarily of developers. The other reason is that they were all I could find on the subject!

Both of these books were fabulous, particularly considering the unpredictable nature of beta software. The books provide excellent preliminary documentation for the new features of SQL Server 2005 including the .NET Runtime Host extensions and Broker Services.

In addition to being well written and full of examples, these books are a great compliment of each other. The Addison-Wesley book shines in the area of defining the syntax of the new T-SQL extensions and providing examples. The MS Press book does not lay out the syntax but provides better examples and often includes a diagram to accompany a discussion.

As is expected with any literature based on a beta product, there are a few issues with the books. Foremost, the books make reference of the System.Data.SqlServer namespace. As of December of 2004, this namespace has been removed and its functionality has been moved back into System.Data.SqlClient. Additionally, The MS Press book makes use of a “:” syntax for creating an object based off of a member of an assembly. For consistency, the “:” syntax has been replaced with a “.” syntax.

If I had to suggest one of these books, my vote would immediately go to the MS Press book. The Addison-Wesley book tends to be wordy and drawn out. The MS press book is half the length of the Addison-Wesley book and covers the same information almost in the same level of detail. The MS Press book is also an easy read and its use of diagrams makes scanning for information simple. For anyone serious about getting involved with SQL Server 2005 development though, I would recommend reading these books together to get a better view of the overall picture.