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SQL Server® 2008 Administration: Real World Skills for MCITP Certification and Beyond by Tom Carpenter

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Collations

Data collations define the rules by which data is compared, sorted, and presented. Most English-speaking people know that the letter B comes before the letter F in the English alphabet and that the letter X comes after the letter M, but most English-speaking people do not know the order of the letters (characters) used in the Hebrew alphabet. SQL Server must be able to sort data in any language that it supports. Collations allow it to perform this action.

Additionally, the collations allow the server to determine how best to display information in cooperation with the client application. The character set defines the presentation. The character set on the database server should match that used by the client applications. The database ...

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