Accelerated SQL Server 2008 – Walters, Coles, Ferracchiati, Rae & Farmer

September 21, 2008

Apress asked me to review this book, so here goes… I was a little disappointed, but on the whole thought it was pretty good. I also posted this review to Amazon, where I figure more people will read it.

I saw this book come out, and had high expectations. The authors are all great guys who really know their stuff. What’s more, Donald Farmer is _the_ guy for Data Mining, so I was hoping for a big section about the improvements in that area for SQL 2008.

Looking through it though, it feels like a book that was written for SQL 2005 that just got updated a little for SQL 2008, and that wasn’t what I was wanting. And to boot, there are things that are just plain missing. There’s not a single page on Data Mining, and some of my favourite features just don’t appear. For Xmpl, in the FOR XML section, there’s no mention of FOR XML PATH at all – which has to be the best way of using FOR XML.

However, I will still recommend this book. I will recommend this book to people who are moving from SQL 2000 and want to know what’s new in both SQL 2005 and 2008, but there is a better reason again:

It’s really honest! It’s written by Microsoft guys, and they give really frank opinions about things. There are times when they happily point out that one feature or another isn’t really as useful as it sounds. It’s the kind of thing that more books need.

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