The tech marketer is involved with all the technical aspects of their ecosystem and SQL programming for relational database management is relevant.

SQL is a specialized database management language, which is used by DBAs for more than a couple of decades now. SQL is considered being the default relational database management system (RDBMS) language by all.

One major misassumption to be cleared at the first point is that SQL is not a programming language as many of them think. It is a protocol used to manipulate and query the databases for the creation of procedural extensions in databases. However, even though not one by its own, SQL servers all functionality of a featured programming language.

Over the last two decades, SQL had undergone several changes and upgrades, which all helped it to become much standard and simpler. SQL programming is much straightforward now and has optimal strength in querying and managing any type of relational databases.

Even when other database languages do good for DBAs, SQL-based Oracle implementations are deemed to be the top choice in DBMS by many.

However, a drawback of SQL as pointed out by the new age database administrators now are the fact that it is getting complicated while dealing with the challenge of the big data ecosystems now.

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SQL programming follows a declarative model of programming where each of the statements in it will describe specific actions to be executed on the DBMS, which helps to structure, plan, and execute various operations for the DBAs.

While practicing SQL programming, the administrators should also be well versed in the ways how various database systems process SQL commands to administer an appropriate DB execution plan.

Languages under Structured Query Language

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SQL is not a standalone DBA language, but there are some sublanguages also as used by RemoteDBA.com in order to better manage RDBM systems.

  • DML: Data Manipulation Language is used to manipulate data stored and to raise various queries to add, delete, and retrieve data. Standard DML statements are for selection, updating, insertion, and deletion.
  • DDL: Data Definition Language is to define the most appropriate data structure. DDL statements can be used to create, delete, or update database objects.
  • DCL: Data Control Language is used for access restriction to databases. DCL statements are used to assign certain privileges to each user. This controls the privilege to apply the DML and DDL commands onto databases.
  • TCL: Transaction Control Language, as the name suggests is to control transactions on a database. These statements are used to apply different changes to database transactions or to undo them. TCL statements are also used to set some save points to divide the transactions among various parts effectively.

Basic terminology related to SQL-based database management

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As we have seen, the basic structure and sub-languages in SQL programming as above, now we will look at the basic functionality and terminology of SQL, which will be beneficial for the fresh DBAs.

1. Indexing

The primary reason why databases are stored in a relational/structured manner is that it will make retrieval of the data much quicker and easier. While preparing queries, DBAs can custom set the criteria by using SQL queries to get the very data from the exact rows.

However, such an intensive search on a bigger database will take many hours if the database system needs to scan on the entire data sets, by scrolling through each column.

In relational databases, you may come across millions of columns and retrieval may be tedious. So, to improve efficacy, DBAs set each table with multiple indexes. Such an indexing model will enable a quicker look-up with the use of SQL queries.

2. Constraints

Several rules are applied to proper database management and administration. Constraints are one such concept, which is applicable to DB info. Various constraints are ideally used to enforce set rules on the tabular data.

Setting constraints will end up in rejecting any attempt for creation of a new row if the inputs contradictory to the set rules. This ultimately ensures that there is excellent database compliance, which ultimately helps in data integrity.

3. Key

Two primary key types in databases like Microsoft SQL Server are:

  • Primary key, and
  • Foreign key

Primary key refers to a single column whereas a group of columns is known as a compound key. This will help identify multiple rows in the given table. Every table in SQL databases will have a primary key. Provided this condition, there will not be any two rows in a table which contain matching data per primary key.

A foreign key is ideally used to define relationships between multiple tables. It defines either single groups or groups of columns based on the primary key references of another table. This is used to define the links between two tables or two databases.

4. View

View if used for the creation of virtual tables in a database. A view is used to gather all needed information from different sources and then present them in a structured form in a table.

The query information of view gets filtered by removing all unwanted information and then presented to match to the exact need of the DBA/user.

5. Stored procedures

Stored procedures are used to create some custom programs in SQL server databases. These may be single stand-alone queries which will either return the needed data or can update the rows. Sometimes, stored procedures may be complex programs with some looping needs and conditional structure.

6. Normalization and denormalization of databases

Normalization helps the DBAs to minimize or fully eradicate any possibility of duplicate data in the same database. The approach of normalization will help to reduce any possible errors and help increase the integrity of the DB.

On the other hand, denormalization allows data duplication, but for good. In some cases, ensuring better performance may be the need, where denormalization functions better than normalized databases.

However, as the database size required is more, this approach will also increase the cost. When the need is for optimum performance and speed, denormalization can be adopted.

Now as you know the fundamentals of SQL server programming, you can move in more confidently to better plan, create, and manipulate relational databases using SQL.

Warp up on SQL Programming for Relational Database Management

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The data is stored in table format in Relational databases. Each table has many columns and records and can grow large.SQL is used to manage data in a table by Relational database management systems (RDBMSs). You can use RDBMS of your choice depends on the application and its complexity!

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Jim T. Marcano is a columnist in technology publishing and also used to write blogs and articles on leading websites like RemoteDBA.com. He is now counted as one of the authentic voice in terms of SQL vs. NoSQL database administration in the DB fraternity.

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