Recent projects (not related to migrating away from U2, fortunately) have landed two of these on my desk:

"Mastering Crystal Reports 9" by Cate McCoy and Gord Maric

"SQL Server 7: A Beginner's Guide" by Dusan Petkovic

The CR manual is pretty sharp -- I only ran into trouble when trying to develop custom VB and web interfaces, and then only because of some less-documented "features" that a lot of other people on the community site ran into. If you want things like that solved quickly, be prepared to pay for support. (Note: CR version 10 was released just last month, and this book was published before CR 9 was available.) I can also offer VB source code for a standalone viewer.

The SQL manual steps fairly lightly, introducing basics before going into details, and it covers the various parts of SQL Server pretty well. I've had to use trial and error to make some fairly basic relational tables with useful constraints, but having a decent client like SQLExecMS ( is a tremendous help. You might want another book that focuses on Transact-SQL to flesh this one out.

Just an observation: I was really disappointed that with version 9 CR has completely abandoned the standalone report viewer as a means of distribution. I'm sure doing so simplifies their support, shows their ability to support web interfaces, and generates better licensing revenue, but I didn't appreciate all the extra work it took to distribute a few reports to just a handful of users.

David Beahm

Mark Johnson wrote:

I would like to know the best beginning books for either of these two topics. I don't yet want a reference, rather to know if 'Dummies' Books are appropriate or if anyone else has better beginning selections.

My UD client migrating to these wants to keep me and this is the environment.


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