Top 4 Free Microsoft SQL Server Books - PDF Download or Online Read

Hello Guys, today, I am going to share some of the excellent database and SQL server books that are freely available on the internet for reading online or download as PDF. If you have been reading this blog then you know that I love books, I love to read books, and I love to collect books, that's why I have a significant online and offline library. Many people question me, do I really find to read all the books which I share? Well, I don't read all books page by page, unless and until its something like Effective Java or Clean Code. I mostly skim through books and stopping on exciting and new things, which I don't know or probably have a misconception, but I do like to refer books many times. If I skim through a book, I know where I can find more information about a particular concept, and then I explore it in more depth.

I have learned a lot of technologies, programming languages, databases, and frameworks by reading books, and that's why I also love to share good resources whenever I find them, particularly free ones.

Microsoft SQL Server is one of the accessible databases along with Oracle and MySQL, and I have used it a lot in the last couple of years. I like to write SQL queries and optimize it, and that's why I always read books on databases.

In this article, I am going to share 4 free books to learn Microsoft SQL Server database, first is about database performance tips for developers, ideally suited to many Java developers who write stored procedures, queries, and SQL scripts and me and this is one of those books, which I think every developer should read.

The second book on the list is about SQL code smells, which talks about standard SQL practices in which every programmer should avoid dealing with the database. It contains 119 code smells, and I think the list is probably growing to 150; you can find more SQL code smells on their website. This is again a good book for all developers who write SQL queries or deal with the database.

The third and fourth book is about the Microsoft SQL Server database, one focus on transaction log management, probably an advanced concept for many developers but beneficial for DBAs, and the second one is an introductory book on Microsoft SQL Server 2014 database. A good book if you want to learn SQL Server from scratch.

Btw, if you are new to SQL itself, then I also suggest you join The Complete SQL Bootcamp course by Jose Portilla on Udemy. This is excellent for beginners and people who are starting from scratch.




Top 4 Free Database and Microsoft SQL Server Books

Without any further Ado, here is a list of free Database, SQL, and SQL Server books for developers. The list is by no means exhaustive, and first, a couple of books are really short, which you can finish in a couple of days. Still, they are also packed with a lot of useful information which every programmer who writes SQL query or works with the database should be aware of.

45 Database Performance Tips for Developers

Author: Phil Factor, Grant Fritchey
Download: http://www.red-gate.com/products/sql-development/sql-prompt/entrypage/sql-performance-tips-ebook
Description: This book is a collection of some of the best SQL Server performance tips and tricks recommended by some of the smartest minds in the Simple Talk community, including SQL Server MVPs. This book will immensely help you to improve your application's database performance. Big thanks to @RedGate for providing this book for free.

free SQL and Database Performance tuning book

You can download this book as PDF and read offline. You can also check their website for more database performance tips. Btw, if you are more interested in tuning SQL queries for better performance, then the SQL Tuning course on Udemy is also an excellent resource.



119 SQL Code Smells 

Author: Tony Davis and Gail Shaw
Download: http://www.red-gate.com/products/sql-development/sql-test/entrypage/code-smells
Description:  The 119 SQL Code Smells is a handy reference guide from Redgate written with advice, help, or contributions from over 25 SQL Server professionals, including programmers and DBAs.

SQL best practice book for free

This book covers 119 standard SQL code smells, code which we write every day but don't realize its bad. This book helps you understand why they smell and the problems they may cause.

I strongly recommend every developer to read this book because SQL is an essential part of programming career and knowledge you will gain by reading this book will serve you for a long time.

Btw, if you are not familiar with SQL itself, then The complete SQL BootCamp course on Udemy is a good starting point.



SQL Server Transaction Log Management

Author: Tony Davis and Gail Shaw
Download: http://www.red-gate.com/products/dba/sql-backup/entrypage/transaction-log-management
Description: This is an excellent book about SQL server transaction logging and particularly useful for DBAs. It covers performing transaction log backup and restore monitoring and managing log growth, including quick diagnosis of the causes of rapid growth, and optimizing log architecture to maximize log throughput and availability.

free book to learn SQL Server

You can download SQL Server Transaction Log Management, by Tony Davis and Gail Shaw, for free in pdf format from Red Gate Software.  Once again, big thanks to Red Gate for providing these quality books for free.

Btw, If you are a new DBA and interested in SQL Server management skills, then SQL Server Administration course is an excellent place to start with. It's a multi-part course but quite right from the admin perspective. 




Introducing Microsoft SQL Server 2014 

Author:  Ross Mistry and Stacia Misner
Download: http://aka.ms/684751pdf
Description: This is one of the best free e-books to learn Microsoft SQL Server 2014 by Ross Mistry and Stacia Misner. Unlike most of the eBooks which are either older or not relevant, this book is both latest and relevant because it covers Microsoft SQL Server 2014.

free book to learn SQL Server - best


The free Introducing Microsoft SQL Server 2014 book is for programmers, business analysts, and anyone who has an interest in SQL Server 2014 and wants to understand its capabilities. Many new improvements have been made to SQL Server 2014, but the book covers only essential ones; hence, its size is just right for casual reading.

In short, one of the best free SQL Server eBooks for both database administrators (DBA) and application developers. Btw, if you prefer online courses, then book then Microsoft SQL for Beginners on Udemy is also an excellent place to start with. 


That's all about some of the best free books and eBooks to learn some SQL and Database best practices along with the Microsoft SQL Server database. As I said, the first two books are seriously good, and I recommend every programmer and application developer to read those books, not once, but twice. They are just too good and summarized years of experience in only a few pages. The last couple of books are good to start with the Microsoft SQL Server database and learn the transaction logging in detail.

Further Learning
Introduction to SQL
The Complete SQL Bootcamp
SQL for Newbs: Data Analysis for Beginners


If you like reading books then here are a couple of free books and eBooks to learn jQuery, Java, JavaScript, Data Structures and Algorithms, Python, Apache Maven, Scala and Struts this year:

And if you like online courses to learn a new technology then here are a couple of free classes you can use to learn Spring, Java, Apache Spark, Angular, and Android Development this year:

Thanks for reading this article so far. If you really like this article, then please share it with your friends and colleagues. If you have any questions or feedback or any other great free eBook to share, then please drop a comment. 

P. S. - If you rather prefer watching than reading books then you can also check this list of free Microsoft SQL Server and T-SQL courses to learn MSSQL and T-SQL this year. They are excellent resources and also complements these books.


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