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Beginning Database Design Solutions by Rod Stephens

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Chapter 16. MySQL

MySQL is a database engine designed to be used as a backend for a separate user interface. The user interface might be a Web page that uses Java, JavaScript, ASP, ASP.NET, or some other scripting technology to interact with the database. Alternatively the user interface might be a desktop application built in a high-level programming language such as Visual Basic, C#, or C++.

This chapter explains how to use MySQL to design and build a relational database. In this chapter you learn how to:

  • Create tables.

  • Create foreign key constraints.

  • Create entity-relationship diagrams.

  • Create triggers that validate data.

  • Export scripts that build a database.

Installing MySQL

One of MySQL's greatest strengths is its price: $0. That makes it a very popular database with those trying to build an application or Web site on a budget. It has its roots in Linux computers so it's also very popular with those who use the various flavors of Linux.

A couple of feature-enhanced (in other words, not free) versions are also available. They provide extra support for teams of developers and enterprise applications. They're not really necessary for the examples shown here so they're not covered in this book. After you work through the examples and exercises in this chapter, you can decide whether you should look into these enhanced versions.

MySQL itself is a database engine, not a sophisticated development tool such as Microsoft Access. Though it is functional, you will probably find MySQL easier to ...

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