Author: Cary Jensen & Loy Anderson
Aimed at: Developers working with Advantage Database Server
Pros: Comprehensive, written by enthusiasts
Cons: Focussed on a specific product
Reviewed by: Sue Gee
Although there's some information about general database structure as a by-product this book is, as stated on the cover, about the Sybase product, Advantage Database Server. It has been written by two ADS insiders and their enthusiasm for their product is evident. Here we have a cross between a sales pitch, a user manual and a reference work that will be useful to anyone already using or planning to use the product. For existing users it is especially helpful in learning about the new features in versions 8.0 and 8.1 and in wanting. For those looking for an alternative to a full-blown SQL database it provides an insight into ISAM (Indexed Sequential Access Method) structure and shows how ADS provides extensive support for SQL.
Part I starts with the promotional pitch about what Advantage is and what the data access options are. It then covers the basics such as tables, indexes, data dictionaries and views. Part II is about Advantage's own dialect of SQL and covers using QBuilder (like the MS Access QBE), and writing in SQL itself. Part III covers using ADS with various languages including Delphi, Java,.NET, PHP and more and does a good job of explaining the various ways of getting data into and out of ADS. The authors make good use of screen dumps throughout to give a clear and practical account. This is a comprehensive and well written book on ADS that gives a good, if partisan, introduction to the product.