Oracle PL/SQL Language Pocket Reference, 4th Edition
A Guide to Oracle's PL/SQL Language Fundamentals
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Final Release Date: October 2007
Pages: 180

The fourth edition of this popular pocket guide provides quick-reference information that will help you use Oracle's PL/SQL language, including the newest Oracle Database 11g features. It's a companion to Steven Feuerstein and Bill Pribyl's bestselling Oracle PL/SQL Programming.

This concise guide boils down the most vital PL/SQL information into an accessible summary of:

  • Fundamental language elements (e.g., block structure, datatypes, declarations)
  • Statements for program control, cursor management, and exception handling
  • Records, procedures, functions, triggers, and packages
  • Calling PL/SQL functions in SQL
  • Compilation options, object-oriented features, collections, and Java integration
The new edition describes such Oracle Database 11g elements as PL/SQL's function result cache, compound triggers, the CONTINUE statement, the SIMPLE_INTEGER datatype, and improvements to native compilation, regular expressions, and compiler optimization (including intra-unit inlining). In addition, this book now includes substantial new sections on Oracle's built-in functions and packages.

When you need answers quickly, the Oracle PL/SQL Language Pocket Reference will save you hours of frustration.

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oreillyOracle PL/SQL Language Pocket Reference, 4th Edition

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(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)


A book for every PL/SQL Developer's Desk

By jt_canada

from Nova Scotia, Canada

About Me Designer, Developer

Verified Reviewer


  • Accurate
  • Concise
  • Easy to understand
  • Helpful examples
  • Well-written


  • Needs electronic copy too

Best Uses

  • Expert
  • Intermediate
  • Novice

Comments about oreilly Oracle PL/SQL Language Pocket Reference, 4th Edition:

If you're a PL/SQL developer, then you already know about Steven Feuerstein. This book does not replace his Oracle PL/SQL Programming text, but is a handy pocket guide which provides you with some simple reminders of syntax, usage and sample code.
In many instances it will also describe some of the nuances and differences between PL/SQL delivered with 9i, 10g and 11g versions of the Oracle database.
The only downside to an otherwise perfect book is the lack of electronic copy. I'm of the opinion that if you shell out for a hard copy book, a CD copy should come with it. I don't care if it is protected by a proprietary reader, but it should be searchable. Sure, the pocket reference is there to make searching quick, but there are times when I'm at my laptop without a book handy.

As an aside, I also have to recommend the other books in the Oracle series. I've read many many oracle books over the past 15 years, from the likes of O'Reilly, Osborne/Oracle Press, Prentice Hall, Apress -- and I can easily admit that the O'Reilly / Feuerstein series are the best. (Incidentally, I've seen his presentations live at UKOUG conference -- and he does not disappoint in person either.
Buy this book. Buy the whole series. And remember to keep getting the updates/new versions. The description of new features must not be missed!

(3 of 4 customers found this review helpful)


Excellent reference on PL/SQL programming and syntax

By jdruin

from Undisclosed

Comments about oreilly Oracle PL/SQL Language Pocket Reference, 4th Edition:

Oracle PL/SQL Language Pocket Reference

Steven Feuerstein

O'Reilly _ 4th Edition

This book covers the most common topics in PL/SQL in a compact format. The format is "pocket reference" which is considerably smaller than a standard book. The information is still complete. It appears the publisher accomplished this by eliminating blank pages between chapters, avoiding the use of large type for chapter headings, and beginning the next chapter a few lines after the previous. This format is convenient for people who need to use the reference often.

The items covered are numerous and relevant making the book a good value. The reference does not cover the SQL language itself outside the context of PL/SQL programming. It also does not go into extreme detail on how Oracle is working behind the scenes. It focuses on how to perform the task at hand then moves onto the next topic. This is good for those just looking for an answer but would not provide the detail to someone studying the inner workings of Oracle itself.

Some of the items covered that I found most useful were:


Exception handling

Transaction management

Syntax of various loops and the case statement

Bulk operations



Syntax of triggers

Differences between 9i and 10g


Overall this is an inexpensive, quality reference for those who program PL/SQL.

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