Introduction

In the mid-1990s, when Microsoft parted ways with Sybase in their conjoint development of SQL Server and started developing Windows NT versions, it was almost a whole different product. When version 6.5 was released in 1996, it was starting to gain credibility as an enterprise-class database server. It still had rough management tools and only core functionalities, and some limitations that are forgotten today, like fixed size devices and the inability to drop table columns. It was doing anyway what a database server is designed for: storing and retrieving data for client applications. There was already enough to learn for anyone new to the relational database world. A lot of concepts had to be understood, like foreign keys, stored ...

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