Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Newbie Resources

In my presentation I have a couple of slides showing what I believe to be good Newbie resources.

These include books, websites and lists that are a good place for Newbies to learn.

I cannot dispute that there are a lot of good resources out there, however some of them are way beyond Newbie level.

Two of the books I recommend are Oracle DBA 101 by Theriault, Carmichael & Viscusi and Expert One on One by Tom Kyte.

DBA 101 because it is the kind of book you can pick up and read cover to cover. It gives a good explanation of the basics, uses a lot of easy to understand analogies and is easy to digest.

Expert One on One because, although it is a slightly more 'hefty' read, it explains concepts in easy to understand detail and includes a lot of workable examples that you can go away with and try for yourself.

I always have a copy of both books to hand.
I use Tom Kyte's book as a reference manual and I would be lost without it.
If I come across a concept or issue that I can't quite grasp, I will turn to Tom's book for clarification.

I also have a couple of other books, that although I have learned from, are not the kind of reading I would recommend to Newbies for fear of overwhelming them.

Concentrating on books for the moment, do you have any 'must reads' that you found as a Newbie, or books that you, even as a seasoned Guru, could not work without and would recommend to Newbies as a way of learning?


Blogger Robert Vollman said...

Absolutely. The Oracle manuals. They're awesome, they're the best, and I use them more than anything.

Other than that, I also use Expert One-on-One far more than any of my other books.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005 10:04:00 pm  
Blogger Lisa said...

Thanks Robert.
I especially like your comments about which F'n manuals to read!

I have said before, my pet hate is a response to Newbies along the vague lines of 'RTFM'.

Sometimes a pointer to which F'n M to read is more than helpful.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005 10:10:00 pm  
Anonymous Mike Borden said...

I have Jonathan Lewis's "Practical Oracle 8i". I also have Tom Kyte's "Effective Oracle by Design". I think that one might be more geared towards programmers, but it's still a good read for a DBA.


Thursday, October 06, 2005 1:00:00 pm  
Blogger scubajim said...

I found a rather good and interesting page at on how to ask questions. It is sufficiently general to apply to an Oracle Newbie.

Thursday, October 06, 2005 6:27:00 pm  
Blogger JamieF said...

If you're still stuck on the likes of Oracle 8i like myself Robert Freemans Mastering Oracle 8i is good for a basic grounding.

It has good examples you can work through.

Other than that I have tom Kytes expert one-on-one which I have yet to get through.

Thursday, October 06, 2005 7:04:00 pm  
Blogger Peter K said...

I would think out of the Oracle documentation set, the Concepts Guide is probably the best.

Beside the others mentioned, the DBA Handbook by Kevin Loney and Marlene Theriault.

Friday, October 07, 2005 2:55:00 pm  
Blogger Doug Burns said...

Hi Lisa,

I've been meaning to say - nice blog!

I agree that TK's book is surprisingly useful for a newbie because he explains things simply as well as in depth. I used to recommend it to course attendees and assure them that, although it appears daunting initially, it's broken up into manageable chunks. As you say, it also works well as a reference.

I think Jonathan's book works better the more you know and I wouldn't neccessarily recommend it to a newbie even though I admire it.

We used to give away an Oracle Press V7 DBA book on the courses - I think it might have been authored by Mike Ault? - and that used to hit the spot too.

I always think the documentation takes some beating. It's well written, searchable and complete. The only problem is that there are so many discrete books that it can be difficult to know where to start, but the concepts manual, the administrators reference and the backup and recovery manual seem a good starter set for a newbie DBA.

In the end, the book I used to take to every classroom (despite it's weight!) was Tom's.

Oh, I just remembered. For performance tuning, I think the O'Reilly Performance pocket book is incredibly good for the money and the time taken to read it. I don't generally like pocket books, but that one hit the spot. I'm not claiming it's the be all and end all of performance tuning, but it's very well focussed and good to get up to speed quickly. (But I couldn't find it on their website, so maybe it's been withdrawn and I'm in a minority of one!)

See you in Brum!



Friday, October 07, 2005 9:35:00 pm  
Blogger Niall said...

which fm to read is a real issue, the Oracle Myths thing that I did way back when, suggested that the hundreds of gb of manuals actually hindered finding out how stuff works. for that reason i thoroughly recommend the 2-day dba stuff that came out with 10g. Its great work.

expert One-one-One just rocks. - I've got this error, what does it mean; well gee mate its on the internet. - it just bloody works.

Monday, October 10, 2005 9:35:00 pm  
Blogger Lisa said...

Peter K said....

Beside the others mentioned, the DBA Handbook by Kevin Loney and Marlene Theriault.

Yes I forgot to mention that one, how could I?! It is one I was handed down from the previous DBA and the spine is held together with electricians tape.
Always the sign of a good book in my opinion!

Wednesday, October 12, 2005 11:28:00 pm  
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Saturday, March 11, 2006 2:38:00 pm  
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