Microsoft SQL

SQL, often referred as Structured Query Language, is a standard language for accessing and manipulating databases. It is designed for managing data in relational database management systems (RDBMS). SQL can help you do a number of functions such as execute queries against a database, retrieve data from a database, insert/update/delete records in a database, create new database and set permissions on tables, procedures and views.

The SQL language is sub-divided into some language elements. Some of these include:

  • Clauses: Constituent components of statements and queries
  • Queries: Retrieve the data based on specific criteria
  • Predicates: Specify conditions that can be evaluated to SQL
  • Expressions: Produce either scalar values or tables
  • Statements: Have a persistent effect on schemas and data

Features of SQL

SQL is both an easy-to-understand language and a comprehensive tool for managing data. Here are some of the major features of SQL and the market forces that have made it successful:

Vendor Independence

A SQL-based database and the programs that use it can be moved from one DBMS to another vendor's DBMS with minimal conversion effort and little retraining of personnel.

SQL Standards

In 1986, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the International Standards Organization (ISO) published the first official standard for SQL which was expanded in 1989, 1992 and 1999. The evolving standards serve as an official stamp of approval for SQL and have speeded its market acceptance.

Portability across Computer Systems

SQL databases run on various computer systems, ranging from mainframes to stand-alone computers. SQL-based applications that begin on single-user or departmental server systems can be moved to larger server systems as they grow.

Relational Foundation

We already know that SQL is a language for relational databases. The relational database model and row/column structure make SQL simple and easy to understand. he relational model also has a strong theoretical foundation that has guided the evolution and implementation of relational databases.

Programmatic Database Access

SQL is also a database language used by programmers to write applications that access a database. The same SQL statements are used for both interactive and programmatic access, so the database access parts of a program can be tested first with interactive SQL and then embedded into the program.

Advantages of SQL

SQL provides a number of benefits for the users:

  • SQL consists of blocks of code, which can be nested within each other. The code can be easily transferred to any standard database product that abides by the ANSI standards.
  • SQL Server is quick for large and small businesses, so as the business grows, the SQL Server can handle the new volume of database requests. SQL Server can handle millions of records and transactions.
  • SQL engine processes multiple SQL statements simultaneously as a single block, thereby reducing network traffic.
  • Transaction logs are objects on the SQL Server that record the retrieval, update and deletion of records.
  • QL Server has an automatic backup option. The SQL Server automatically saves a copy of the database and the transaction logs on another hard drive or media like a CD-ROM or a DVD.

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