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Re: What's a good PostgreSQL guide book?

From: Christopher Browne <cbbrowne(at)cbbrowne(dot)com>
To: pgsql-hackers(at)postgresql(dot)org
Subject: Re: What's a good PostgreSQL guide book?
Date: 2003-03-27 02:20:10
Message-ID: m3znnh1rfp.fsf@chvatal.cbbrowne.com (view raw or flat)
Thread:
Lists: pgsql-hackers
Martha Stewart called it a Good Thing when"Gary Hendricks" <ghendricks(at)yahoo(dot)com>wrote:
> I'm thinking of buying "Practical PostgreSQL"
> from O'Reilly.
>
> Has anyone got any comments on this book?  Can anyone suggest
> alternatives?
>
> My level is best described as "intermediate".
> Thanks in advance!

The main problem with it is that it is somewhat out of date, being
(roughly) descriptive of 7.1, when we're now at 7.3, where there are
fairly significant improvements that the book certainly does not
address.

There's a new book from New Riders that I browsed on the weekend that
seems quite good in discussing architecture; it is definitely better
in its discussion of vacuuming and performance tuning.

The thing that's "wrong" with any of the books that are available is
that they have considerable portions about the whole variety of
language "bindings" (e.g. - Perl, Python, C, C++, ...) which bulk up
the book when it's really only likely that you'd need a reference on
one or two of the languages.  

I would have loved to see twice or three times as much in the NR book
on performance tuning, and at least twice as much discussion about the
implications of MVCC.

The ORA book isn't useless; I keep a copy on my desk, and fairly
regularly look at it.  Mind you, I more often use the copy of the PG
docs that I put on my PalmPilot that represents the /same material/,
only three versions newer.

If ORA does a new edition (and it's probably not the ideal time for
it, with the book market being rather soft), it would be a pretty good
choice; otherwise, I'd suggest that the NR book has more modern
material that would encourage buying it.
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