Best Microsoft SQL Server Books

There are dozens of database engines out there and MS SQL Server is one of the better ones. It’s designed to run on Microsoft servers so it typically works well for .NET applications.

1. The Definitive Guide to DAX: Business Intelligence for Microsoft Power BI, SQL Server Analysis Services, and Excel Second Edition (Business Skills)

Author: by Marco Russo
Published at: Microsoft Press; 2nd edition (July 2, 2019)
ISBN: 978-1509306978

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Now expanded and updated with modern best practices, this is the most complete guide to Microsoft’s DAX language for business intelligence, data modeling, and analytics. Expert Microsoft BI consultants Marco Russo and Alberto Ferrari help you master everything from table functions through advanced code and model optimization.

You’ll learn exactly what happens under the hood when you run a DAX expression, and use this knowledge to write fast, robust code. This edition focuses on examples you can build and run with the free Power BI Desktop, and helps you make the most of the powerful syntax of variables (VAR) in Power BI, Excel, or Analysis Services.

Want to leverage all of DAX’s remarkable capabilities? This no-compromise deep dive is exactly what you need. Perform powerful data analysis with DAX for Power BI, SQL Server, and Excel Master core DAX concepts, including calculated columns, measures, and calculation groups Work efficiently with basic and advanced table functions Understand evaluation contexts and the CALCULATE and CALCULATETABLE functions Perform time-based calculations Use calculation groups and calculation items Use syntax of variables (VAR) to write more readable, maintainable code Express diverse and unusual relationships with DAX, including many-to-many relationships and bidirectional filters Master advanced optimization techniques, and improve performance in aggregations Optimize data models to achieve better compression Measure DAX query performance with DAX Studio and learn how to optimize your DAX


2. SQL QuickStart Guide: The Simplified Beginner's Guide to Managing, Analyzing, and Manipulating Data With SQL

Author: by Walter Shields
Published at: ClydeBank Media LLC; Illustrated edition (November 18, 2019)
ISBN: 978-1945051753

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“THE BEST SQL BOOK FOR BEGINNERS IN 2021 – HANDS DOWN!”*INCLUDES FREE ACCESS TO A SAMPLE DATABASE, SQL BROWSER APP, COMPREHENSION QUIZZES & SEVERAL OTHER DIGITAL RESOURCES! | #1 NEW RELEASE & #1 BEST SELLER |*Not sure how to prepare for the data-driven future? This book shows you EXACTLY what you need to know to successfully use the SQL programming language to enhance your career!

Are you a developer who wants to expand your mastery to database management? Then you NEED this book. Buy now and start reading today! Are you a project manager who needs to better understand your development team’s needs? A decision maker who needs to make deeper data-driven analysis?

Everything you need to know is included in these pages! The ubiquity of big data means that now more than ever there is a burning need to warehouse, access, and understand the contents of massive databases quickly and efficiently. That’s where SQL comes in.

SQL is the workhorse programming language that forms the backbone of modern data management and interpretation. Any database management professional will tell you that despite trendy data management languages that come and go, SQL remains the most widely used and most reliable to date, with no signs of stopping.


3. SQL All-in-One For Dummies

Author: by Allen G. Taylor
Published at: For Dummies; 3rd edition (April 23, 2019)
ISBN: 978-1119569619

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The latest on SQL databases SQL All -In-One For Dummies, 3rd Edition, is a one-stop shop for everything you need to know about SQL and SQL-based relational databases. Everyone from database administrators to application programmers and the people who manage them will find clear, concise explanations of the SQL language and its many powerful applications.

With the ballooning amount of data out there, more and more businesses, large and small, are moving from spreadsheets to SQL databases like Access, Microsoft SQL Server, Oracle databases, MySQL, and PostgreSQL. This compendium of information covers designing, developing, and maintaining these databases.

Cope with any issue that arises in SQL database creation and management Get current on the newest SQL updates and capabilities Reference information on querying SQL-based databases in the SQL language Understand relational databases and their importance to today’s organizations SQL All-In-One For Dummies is a timely update to the popular reference for readers who want detailed information about SQL databases and queries.


4. Database Systems: Design, Implementation, & Management

Author: by Carlos Coronel
Published at: Cengage Learning; 13th edition (January 1, 2018)
ISBN: 978-1337627900

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Does not contain an access card. Database skills are among the most in-demand IT skills today. Now you can gain a solid foundation in database design and implementation with the practical, easy-to-understand approach in the market-leading DATABASE SYSTEMS: DESIGN, IMPLEMENTATION, AND MANAGEMENT, 13E.

Diagrams, illustrations, and tables clarify in-depth coverage of database design. You learn the key to successful database implementation as you study how to properly design databases to fit within the larger strategic data environment. Clear, straightforward writing supports an outstanding balance of theory and practice with hands-on skills today’s employers want.

Revised SQL coverage offers more SQL examples and simpler explanations that focus on the areas most important for a database career. More coverage of Big Data Analytics and NoSQL, including related Hadoop technologies, now provides a stronger hands-on approach.


5. T-SQL Fundamentals

Author: by Itzik Ben-Gan
Published at: Microsoft Press; 3rd edition (August 3, 2016)
ISBN: 978-1509302000

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Effectively query and modify data using Transact-SQLMaster T-SQL fundamentals and write robust code for Microsoft SQL Server and Azure SQL Database. Itzik Ben-Gan explains key T-SQL concepts and helps you apply your knowledge with hands-on exercises. The book first introduces T-SQL’s roots and underlying logic.

Next, it walks you through core topics such as single-table queries, joins, subqueries, table expressions, and set operators. Then the book covers more-advanced data-query topics such as window functions, pivoting, and grouping sets. The book also explains how to modify data, work with temporal tables, and handle transactions, and provides an overview of programmable objects.

Microsoft Data Platform MVP Itzik Ben-Gan shows you how to: Review core SQL concepts and its mathematical roots Create tables and enforce data integrity Perform effective single-table queries by using the SELECT statement Query multiple tables by using joins, subqueries, table expressions, and set operators Use advanced query techniques such as window functions, pivoting, and grouping sets Insert, update, delete, and merge data Use transactions in a concurrent environment Get started with programmable objectsfrom variables and batches to user-defined functions, stored procedures, triggers, and dynamic SQL


6. Database Design for Mere Mortals: 25th Anniversary Edition

Author: by Michael J Hernandez
Published at: Addison-Wesley Professional; 4th edition (December 17, 2020)
ISBN: 978-0136788041

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The #1 Easy, Commonsense Guide to Database DesignNow Updated Foreword by Michelle Poolet, Mount Vernon Data Systems LLC Michael J. Hernandez’s best-selling Database Design for Mere Mortals has earned worldwide respect as the simplest way to learn relational database design. Now, he’s made this hands-on, software independent tutorial even clearer and easier to use.

Step by step, this new 25th Anniversary Edition shows you how to design modern databases that are soundly structured, reliable, and flexible, even in the latest online applications. Hernandez guides you through everything from planning to defining tables, fields, keys, table relationships, business rules, and views.

You’ll learn practical ways to improve data integrity, how to avoid common mistakes, and when to break the rules. Updated review questions and figures help you learn these techniques more easily and effectively. Understand database types, models, and design terminology Perform interviews to efficiently capture requirementseven if everyone’s working remotely Set clear design objectives and transform them into effective designs Analyze a current database so you can identify ways to improve it Establish table structures and relationships, assign primary keys, set field specifications, and set up views Ensure the correct level of data integrity for each database Identify and establish business rules Preview and prepare for the future of relational databases Whatever relational database systems you use, Hernandez will help you design databases that are robust and trustworthy.


7. Learn SQL Quickly: A Beginner’s Guide to Learning SQL, Even If You’re New to Databases

Author: by Code Quickly
Published at: Drip Digital (November 9, 2020)
ISBN: 978-1951791780

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You don’t have to go back to school in order to get ahead in today’s world Do you have a burning desire to expand your skillset but don’t have the time or care to go back to studying for the next 4+ years?

Do you feel as if you are capable of so much more, and that you should be making a bigger contribution to the world? Are you ready to learn one of the most in-demand skills of the 21st century and set yourself up for outstanding success in your career – success that will not only benefit you, but thousands, perhaps millions, of other people as well?

Or, maybe you’ve already landed your dream job and now your boss needs you to fulfill the role as quickly as possible. Whatever the case may be, learning the ins and outs of the coding universe doesn’t have to be some kind of big and complex ordeal.

The internet might be abuzz with all kinds of confusing tutorials and partial playbooks making it seem like learning to code is harder than it really is, but rest assured, this is not true. Did you know that the average individual spends $20,000 on a course that is sometimes up to 24 weeks long just to learn the basics of coding?


8. T-SQL Querying (Developer Reference)

Author: by Itzik Ben-Gan
Published at: Microsoft Press; 1st edition (March 6, 2015)
ISBN: 978-0735685048

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T-SQL insiders help you tackle your toughest queries and query-tuning problems Squeeze maximum performance and efficiency from every T-SQL query you write or tune. Four leading experts take an in-depth look at T-SQL’s internal architecture and offer advanced practical techniques for optimizing response time and resource usage.

Emphasizing a correct understanding of the language and its foundations, the authors present unique solutions they have spent years developing and refining. All code and techniques are fully updated to reflect new T-SQL enhancements in Microsoft SQL Server 2014 and SQL Server 2012.

Write faster, more efficient T-SQL code: Move from procedural programming to the language of sets and logic Master an efficient top-down tuning methodology Assess algorithmic complexity to predict performance Compare data aggregation techniques, including new grouping sets Efficiently perform data-analysis calculations Make the most of T-SQL’s optimized bulk import tools Avoid date/time pitfalls that lead to buggy, poorly performing code Create optimized BI statistical queries without additional software Use programmable objects to accelerate queries Unlock major performance improvements with In-Memory OLTP Master useful and elegant approaches to manipulating graphs About This Book For experienced T-SQL practitioners Includes coverage updated from Inside Microsoft SQL Server 2008 T-SQL Querying and Inside Microsoft SQL Server 2008 T-SQL Programming Valuable to developers, DBAs, BI professionals, and data scientists Covers many MCSE 70-464 and MCSA/MCSE 70-461 exam topics


9. A Guide to SQL

Author: by Philip J. Pratt
Published at: Cengage Learning; 9th edition (December 12, 2014)
ISBN: 978-1111527273

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A GUIDE TO SQL, Ninth Edition, provides an effective introduction to SQL programming using straightforward instruction, extensive hands-on exercises, and a strong foundation in real-world business applications. The Ninth Edition builds on the longstanding success of this proven text by presenting basic SQL commands in the context of a running case, in which a business uses SQL to manage orders, items, customers, and sales reps.

The authors emphasize that fundamental principles and practices apply regardless of the database environment chosen, and they include examples from the latest versions of Oracle and Microsoft Access, and SQL Server throughout the text.

10. Microsoft SQL Server 2019: A Beginner's Guide, Seventh Edition

Author: by Dusan Petkovic
Published at: McGraw-Hill Education; 7th edition (January 2, 2020)
ISBN: 978-1260458879

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Publisher’s Note: Products purchased from Third Party sellers are not guaranteed by the publisher for quality, authenticity, or access to any online entitlements included with the product. Get Up to Speed on Microsoft SQL Server 2019 Quickly and EasilyStart working with Microsoft SQL Server 2019 in no time with help from this thoroughly revised, practical resource.

Filled with real-world examples and hands-on exercises, Microsoft SQL Server 2019: A Beginner’s Guide, Seventh Edition starts by explaining fundamental relational database system concepts. From there, you’ll learn how to write Transact-SQL statements, execute simple and complex database queries, handle system administration and security, and use powerful analysis and reporting tools.

New topics such as SQL and JSON support, graph databases, and support for machine learning with R and Python are also covered in this step-by-step tutorial. Install, configure, and customize Microsoft SQL Server 2019 Create and modify database objects with Transact-SQL statements Write stored procedures and user-defined functions Handle backup and recovery, and automate administrative tasks Tune your database system for optimal availability and reliability Secure your system using authentication, encryption, and authorization Work with SQL Server Analysis Services, Reporting Services, and other BI tools Gain knowledge of relational storage, presentation, and retrieval of data stored in the JSON format Manage graphs using SQL Server Graph Databases Learn about machine learning support for R and Python

11. Azure SQL Revealed: A Guide to the Cloud for SQL Server Professionals

Author: by Bob Ward
Published at: Apress; 1st ed. edition (October 31, 2020)

ISBN: 978-1484259306

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Intermediate-Advanced user level

12. SQL Server 2017 Query Performance Tuning: Troubleshoot and Optimize Query Performance

Author: by Grant Fritchey
Published at: Apress; 5th ed. edition (September 4, 2018)
ISBN: 978-1484238875


SQL Server 2017 Query Performance Tuning: Troubleshoot and Optimize Query Performance Cover

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Identify and fix causes of poor performance. You will learn Query Store, adaptive execution plans, and automated tuning on the Microsoft Azure SQL Database platform. Anyone responsible for writing or creating T-SQL queries will find valuable the insight into bottlenecks, including how to recognize them and eliminate them.

This book covers the latest in performance optimization features and techniques and is current with SQL Server 2017. If your queries are not running fast enough and you’re tired of phone calls from frustrated users, then this book is the answer to your performance problems.

SQL Server 2017 Query Performance Tuning is about more than quick tips and fixes. You’ll learn to be proactive in establishing performance baselines using tools such as Performance Monitor and Extended Events. You’ll recognize bottlenecks and defuse them before the phone rings.

You’ll learn some quick solutions too, but emphasis is on designing for performance and getting it right. The goal is to head off trouble before it occurs. What You’ll LearnUse Query Store to understand and easily change query performanceRecognize and eliminate bottlenecks leading to slow performanceDeploy quick fixes when needed, following up with long-term solutionsImplement best practices in T-SQL to minimize performance riskDesign in the performance that you need through careful query and index designUtilize the latest performance optimization features in SQL Server 2017Protect query performance during upgrades to the newer versions of SQL ServerWho This Book Is ForDevelopers and database administrators with responsibility for application performance in SQL Server environments.

13. Microsoft SQL Server 2016 Reporting Services, Fifth Edition

Author: by Brian Larson
Published at: McGraw-Hill Education; 5th edition (September 20, 2016)
ISBN: 978-1259641503

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Publisher’s Note: Products purchased from Third Party sellers are not guaranteed by the publisher for quality, authenticity, or access to any online entitlements included with the product. Up-to-Date Coverage of Microsoft SQL Server 2016 Reporting Services, Including the Mobile Report PublisherBuild, publish, and maintain paginated and mobile reports using the expert tips and best practices contained in this hands-on guide.

Written by a member of the original Reporting Services development team, Microsoft SQL Server 2016 Reporting Services, Fifth Edition, fully explains the process of creating and distributing reports and shows how to maximize all of the powerful, integrated SSRS capabilities, including the new and enhanced features.

A detailed case study and sample reports are featured in this practical resource. Plan for, install, configure, and customize SQL Server 2016 Reporting Services Design and generate feature-rich reports using the Report Wizard Work with Report Designer in Visual Studio, Report Builder, and the Mobile Report Publisher Incorporate charts, images, gauges, and maps Enhance your reports through summarizing, totaling, and interactivity Build reusable report templates Embed Visual Basic .

14. The Modern Data Warehouse in Azure: Building with Speed and Agility on Microsoft’s Cloud Platform

Author: by Matt How
Published at: Apress; 1st ed. edition (June 16, 2020)
ISBN: 978-1484258224

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Build a modern data warehouse on Microsoft’s Azure Platform that is flexible, adaptable, and fastfast to snap together, reconfigure, and fast at delivering results to drive good decision making in your business. Gone are the days when data warehousing projects were lumbering dinosaur-style projects that took forever, drained budgets, and produced business intelligence (BI) just in time to tell you what to do 10 years ago.

This book will show you how to assemble a data warehouse solution like a jigsaw puzzle by connecting specific Azure technologies that address your own needs and bring value to your business. You will see how to implement a range of architectural patterns using batches, events, and streams for both data lake technology and SQL databases.

You will discover how to manage metadata and automation to accelerate the development of your warehouse while establishing resilience at every level. And you will know how to feed downstream analytic solutions such as Power BI and Azure Analysis Services to empower data-driven decision making that drives your business forward toward a pattern of success.

15. Hands-On SQL Server 2019 Analysis Services: Design and query tabular and multi-dimensional models using Microsoft's SQL Server Analysis Services

Author: by Steven Hughes
Published at: Packt Publishing (October 22, 2020)
ISBN: 978-1800204768

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Get up to speed with the new features added to Microsoft SQL Server 2019 Analysis Services and create models to support your businessKey FeaturesExplore tips and tricks to design, develop, and optimize end-to-end data analytics solutions using Microsoft’s technologiesLearn tabular modeling and multi-dimensional cube design development using real-world examplesImplement Analysis Services to help you make productive business decisionsBook DescriptionSQL Server Analysis Services (SSAS) continues to be a leading enterprise-scale toolset, enabling customers to deliver data and analytics across large datasets with great performance.

This book will help you understand MS SQL Server 2019’s new features and improvements, especially when it comes to SSAS. First, you’ll cover a quick overview of SQL Server 2019, learn how to choose the right analytical model to use, and understand their key differences.

You’ll then explore how to create a multi-dimensional model with SSAS and expand on that model with MDX. Next, you’ll create and deploy a tabular model using Microsoft Visual Studio and Management Studio. You’ll learn when and how to use both tabular and multi-dimensional model types, how to deploy and configure your servers to support them, and design principles that are relevant to each model.

16. SQL Server 2019 Administration Inside Out

Author: by Randolph West
Published at: Microsoft Press; 1st edition (April 16, 2020)
ISBN: 978-0135561089

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Conquer SQL Server 2019 administrationfrom the inside out Dive into SQL Server 2019 administrationand really put your SQL Server DBA expertise to work. This supremely organized reference packs hundreds of timesaving solutions, tips, and workaroundsall you need to plan, implement, manage, and secure SQL Server 2019 in any production environment: on-premises, cloud, or hybrid.

Six experts thoroughly tour DBA capabilities available in SQL Server 2019 Database Engine, SQL Server Data Tools, SQL Server Management Studio, PowerShell, and Azure Portal. You’ll find extensive new coverage of Azure SQL, big data clusters, PolyBase, data protection, automation, and more.

Discover how experts tackle today’s essential tasksand challenge yourself to new levels of mastery. Explore SQL Server 2019’s toolset, including the improved SQL Server Management Studio, Azure Data Studio, and Configuration Manager Design, implement, manage, and govern on-premises, hybrid, or Azure database infrastructures Install and configure SQL Server on Windows and Linux Master modern maintenance and monitoring with extended events, Resource Governor, and the SQL Assessment API Automate tasks with maintenance plans, PowerShell, Policy-Based Management, and more Plan and manage data recovery, including hybrid backup/restore, Azure SQL Database recovery, and geo-replication Use availability groups for high availability and disaster recovery Protect data with Transparent Data Encryption, Always Encrypted, new Certificate Management capabilities, and other advances Optimize databases with SQL Server 2019’s advanced performance and indexing features Provision and operate Azure SQL Database and its managed instances Move SQL Server workloads to Azure: planning, testing, migration, and post-migration