for Oracle DBAs, by Andy Duncan, Jared Still; ISBN
by: Songmuh Jong, send
by: O'Reilly & Associates, go
to the web site
Perl and Internet connection for downloading packages
is a popular programming language. Oracle is a popular
database server. IT developers who know about both
tools can do wonders with data. This book targets
Database Administrators (DBAs), but it can be used
by database programmers as well. Although the book
does talk about UNIX setups, it is also geared toward
Perl running on Windows machines.
One is an overview about using Perl. The installation
(chapter 2) details downloadable modules and step-by-step
commands to install Perl. It also provides several
sections on Cygwin and compiling Perl. A simple
Perl DBI to display "Hello World" from
the Oracle database is listed.
Part Two is about extending Perl. The GUI (chapter 3) text
lists various Perl packages, their source pages and installations.
The web extensions (chapters 4 to 6) lists Apache server
and various packages that can work with it. Chapter 7 explains
OCI - Oracle's call interface API. It also discusses why
you should use Perl rather than C. Chapter 8 discusses how
to call Perl from PL/SQL - the Oracle's extension of ANSI
The last part is about the DBA Toolkit which the book's
authors developed. This part may be the main reason to buy
this book. The authors provide many examples for the toolkit
packages. The toolkit is downloadable from the book's web
site. Chapter 9 is an introduction to the toolkit and chapter
10 is about DBA routines that can be done in Perl. Chapter
11 is about database monitoring using Perl. Chapter 12 is
about tracking database changes, building a repository and
last but not least, chapter 13 is about checking scheduled
jobs with Perl.
The appendices also contain several useful topics, including
a general introduction to Perl, DBI packages in detail, regular
expressions, and data transformation - especially using the
The few source codes listed before Part 3 are not downloadable.
Readers have to type them in. Some codes are missing. For
example, the Hello Perl/Tk does not have the MainLoop() function
call. The WhatIsTheTime example doesn't display the time
on the label unless it is modified. Part of the reason is
that the authors focus on their own toolkit packages as described
in Part 3.
Aside from those minor shortcomings, this book is valuable
for Oracle professionals. It will save readers lots of time
searching the Internet for Perl-related information. The
book is a comprehensive list of available packages. An Oracle
developer needs to start his own toolkit by trying out various
packages listed in the book and integrating the packages
into their own collection. That's the fun part of the process.
to the Editor are welcome and occasionally abused in public.
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