Systems Engineering and RDBMS

Archive for October 14th, 2008

SQL Server 2008 Certification Exams

Posted by decipherinfosys on October 14, 2008

MSFT has released 4 exams for the SQL Server 2008 certifications:

Exam 70-432: TS: Microsoft SQL Server 2008, Implementation and Maintenance

Exam 70-433: TS: Microsoft SQL Server 2008, Database Development

Exam 70-450: PRO: Designing, Optimizing, and Maintaining a Database Administrative Solution Using Microsoft SQL Server 2008

Exam 70-452: PRO: Designing a Business Intelligence Infrastructure Using Microsoft SQL Server 2008

Certifications are good for your career in 2 ways:

a) It does indicate to the recruiter and the employer that you have the skill set needed for the job.

b) When preparing for these certifications, you would need to cover topics that you might have never had to work with in your professional career.  SQL Server offers a lot of features and depending upon the requirements of one’s job, you might not have touched upon certain topics.  So, while preparing for such certifications, the guides do help in getting a knowledge of all the different areas.

Passing certification just for the sake of achieving it should be avoided.  I have seen colleagues take just cram sessions and clear the certifications and I knew that in day to day work some of them were lacking even the basic fundamentals.  You will end up doing more harm to yourself if you do so because sooner or later, the truth always comes out.  So, it is better to practice and also go through the different study guides and materials (from MSFT or from other vendors), understand the concepts and play with the different scripts in order to solidify your understanding of the features and then achieving these certifications will help you in more ways than one.

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Generating XSD from a XML file

Posted by decipherinfosys on October 14, 2008

When working with XML data, we have a need to have the XSD prepared as well. It can be used in many ways when doing integration between the systems – first and foremost, both the parties involved in the integration need the XSD to get an idea of the schema, secondly, one can then enforce the XML schema collection at their end to ensure that the schema that they are getting is proper – this prevents any surprises down the road when we are processing the data.

Generating a XSD manually is an error prone and a very cumbersome process. There are a lot of tools out there that allow you to do so in a graphical user interface. MSFT also has a utility which is called XSD.exe: XML Schema Definition Tool. It can be used for quite a few operations:

a) XML to XSD which is what we are discussing in this post,

b) XDR to XSD: I doubt that people use it for this functionality though,

c) XSD to Classes: To generate runtime classes from XSD schema file,

d) Classes to XSD: The reverse of the above, and

e) XSD to DataSet: This generates the common language runtime DataSet classes from an XSD schema file.

You can read more on XSD.exe from this MSDN post here. If you look at yesterday’s post in which we provided a sample of the XML file, we can use XSD.exe on it to generate a XSD for us.

C:\Program Files\Microsoft Visual Studio 8\SDK\v2.0\Bin>xsd.exe C:\IF_XML.xml
Microsoft (R) Xml Schemas/DataTypes support utility
[Microsoft (R) .NET Framework, Version 2.0.50727.42]
Copyright (C) Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.
Writing file ‘C:\Program Files\Microsoft Visual Studio 8\SDK\v2.0\Bin\IF_XML.xsd

I could have specified an output directory as well to get the output in a different location. If you just do xsd.exe /? you will get all the supported flag options. The generated file looks like this.  And there is a GUI version of this utility as well which is called VisualXSD – pretty self explanatory – see the screenshot below:

Posted in DB2 LUW, Oracle, SQL Server | Leave a Comment »