Linked by Eugenia Loli on Wed 6th Feb 2002 01:30 UTC
Features, Office PostgreSQL is considered by many to be the most advanced open source database in the world (sorry mySQL), providing a wealth of features (sub-select, transactions, write-ahead logging etc) that are usually only found in commercial databases. PostgreSQL is an object-relational database management system (ORDBMS), originally developed in 1977 by the University of Berkeley and it is included by default as the main database on most *BSD systems, like FreeBSD. But in spite of its long history and extensive user base (however, it is still not as popular as the Linux-centric mySQL though), PostgreSQL suffered from a lack of comprehensive and easy-to-use documentation. "Practical PostgreSQL" (along with 2 more PostgreSQL books, all released the last 2-3 months) fills that information void with a fast-paced guide to installation, configuration, and usage.
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Book Criticisms
by Anon E. Mouse on Tue 19th Feb 2002 22:30 UTC

The book is poor. Really, really poor. People practically perpetrating PostgreSQL (sorry, couldn't resist ;) need a lot more than this book in order to get anywhere. The book simply fails to cover very much of the details I hoped to see. Very little information on best practices, tuning, nitty-gritty under-the-hood info, very little information on programming against PostgreSQL, and a lot of fluff at the end about a payware, so-simple-it-can't-do-much "application server" that reads like an ad. Rarely have I been so offended by a book. A large part of my indignation comes from the fact that the book is published by O'Reilly -- I expect *so* much better from them, I can only think that somehow they got hoodwinked by Command Prompt.

As a hint to all PostgreSQL users, just read the online version of the book, don't bother to buy a copy. Or better yet, go to and read the online documentation. In parts it is sparse, old, or needs improvement, but it strives to be comprehensive and succeeds moderately well. It is also usable and constantly improving.

I cannot recommend the other books on the market, because I haven't read them, but I will be looking into them to see if they cover more information in a more useful manner.