Oracle PL/SQL Best Practices, 2nd Edition
Write the Best PL/SQL Code of Your Life
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Final Release Date: October 2007
Pages: 294

In this compact book, Steven Feuerstein, widely recognized as one of the world's leading experts on the Oracle PL/SQL language, distills his many years of programming, teaching, and writing about PL/SQL into a set of best practices-recommendations for developing successful applications. Covering the latest Oracle release, Oracle Database 11gR2, Feuerstein has rewritten this new edition in the style of his bestselling Oracle PL/SQL Programming. The text is organized in a problem/solution format, and chronicles the programming exploits of developers at a mythical company called My Flimsy Excuse, Inc., as they write code, make mistakes, and learn from those mistakes-and each other.

This book offers practical answers to some of the hardest questions faced by PL/SQL developers, including:

  • What is the best way to write the SQL logic in my application code?

  • How should I write my packages so they can be leveraged by my entire team of developers?

  • How can I make sure that all my team's programs handle and record errors consistently?
Oracle PL/SQL Best Practices summarizes PL/SQL best practices in nine major categories: overall PL/SQL application development; programming standards; program testing, tracing, and debugging; variables and data structures; control logic; error handling; the use of SQL in PL/SQL; building procedures, functions, packages, and triggers; and overall program performance.

This book is a concise and entertaining guide that PL/SQL developers will turn to again and again as they seek out ways to write higher quality code and more successful applications.

"This book presents ideas that make the difference between a successful project and one that never gets off the ground. It goes beyond just listing a set of rules, and provides realistic scenarios that help the reader understand where the rules come from. This book should be required reading for any team of Oracle database professionals."

--Dwayne King, President, KRIDAN Consulting
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Comments about oreilly Oracle PL/SQL Best Practices, 2nd Edition:

Oracle PL/SQL Best Practices

Steven Feuerstein

O'Reilly _ 2nd Edition

This is a great reference for PL/SQL Programmers. The book covers most aspects of PL/SQL code from start to finish. The style used is somewhat narrative and even entertaining. The author lists several pitfalls in each chapter. The "pitfall story" talks about why programmers might write sub-optimal code in the first place, how to recognize the problem, what is the root cause of the problem, and how to fix the problem. Each example lists code with the issue in place and then the "patched" code after the best-practice has been implemented. Most of the example center around a database at the fictional company used to tell the stories, but the examples are forms of common issue found in most any Oracle database.

The reference does not teach the SQL language itself outside the context of PL/SQL programming. It does cover how to write better SQL in some cases and gives advice on encapsulation of SQL, packaging SQL, and auto-generating SQL. Also, best practices for how to use SQL are covered.

By following the guidelines, PL/SQL code would be easier to maintain and debug, especially for someone who did not write the code or for the developer who has not looked at the code in a while. Also, the "best practice" code had better security feature although the author does not cover security extensively. Some of the examples of "in-application" SQL would be vulnerable to SQL injection attacks and the recommendation by the author to encapsulate the SQL into procedures or packages mitigates this risk. The best-practice code runs more efficiently in most cases as well.

Chapters generally cover:

Overall best programming practices




Loops and Branches

Error Handling

Encapsulation of SQL

Functions and Procedures


This is an excellent reference for those who program PL/SQL.

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