Chapter 7. SQL Database Administration

What’s a chapter on database administration doing in a system administration book? There are several strong reasons for people with interests in Perl and system administration to become database-savvy:

  • A not-so-subtle thread running through several chapters of this book is the increasing importance of databases to modern-day system administration. We’ve used databases (albeit simple ones) to keep track of user and machine information, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Mailing lists, password files, and even the Windows-based operating system registry are all examples of databases you probably interact with every day. All large-scale system administration packages (e.g., offerings from CA, Tivoli, HP, and Microsoft) depend on database backends. If you are planning to do any serious system administration, you are bound to bump into a database eventually.

  • Database administration is a play within a play for system administrators. Database administrators (DBAs) have to contend with, among other things:

    • Logins/users

    • Log files

    • Storage management (disk space, etc.)

    • Process management

    • Connectivity issues

    • Backups

    • Security/role-based access control (RBAC)

    Sound familiar? We can and should learn from both knowledge domains.

  • Perl is a glue language, arguably one of the best. Much work has gone into Perl/database integration, thanks mostly to the tremendous energy surrounding web development. We can put this effort to work for us. Though Perl can integrate with ...

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