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Review: Mastering phpMyAdmin
updated by rck, 2005-09-19

Most hosting plans including MySQL also include phpMyAdmin as a front end. A lot of open source php applications depend upon MySQL as a database backend. Knowing more about phpMyAdmin could thus improve a webmasters experience.

Packt publishing was as nice as sending me a copy of their Mastering phpMyAdmin book for review. I hope you enjoy this review as much as I did reading it!

Looking at the content

I really enjoyed reading this book. It is well written, gives you a nice overview over phpMyAdmin as well as it goes in deep. I was for example very excited about finding out that phpMyAdmin is able to export to LaTeX and even do relational diagrams.

The author, Marc Delisle, plays a very important role in the developement of phpMyAdmin himself. Since May 2001, he's been heavily involved as a developer and project administrator of the program.

Table of contents

LaTeX export
LaTeX export
The book has 19 chapters, every chapter has a summary at the end. Still, there are only 240 pages. This makes it a light an pleasant read. Still, one doesn't have the feeling that there isn't enough information in it.

chapters 1 and 2 introduce phpMyAdmin and show how to install it. You will learn bits of the history of phpMyAdmin as well as read about various installation scenarios and how to handle them.

chapters 3 and 4 introduce you to the phpMyAdmin interface and how create databases and tables. The author describes the various panels and windows of phpMyAdmin and shows how to configure themes. Other topics include privileges and manual data insertion.

While chapters 5 and 6 deal with changing data and table structures, chapters 7 and 8 deal with data export/import. Did you know that pMA can export to native Excel files as well as LaTeX and XML?

Table of contents II

PDF Export
PDF Export
chapters 9, 10 and 11 are about searching data, table operations and the relational system. One very interesting feature is the Relation View that gives you a nice overview over your primary- and foreign keys.

chapters 12 and 13 deal with common SQL commands as well the multi-table query generator. pMA supports Syntax-Highlighting, SQL Validation as well as automatic joins (in the query generator).

chapter 14 is about bookmarks. They are a way of permanently storing queries in phpMyAdmin.

chapter 15 describes system documentations like database view, table view and the relational schema which can be exported to PDF.

chapters 16 and 17 deal with MIME-based transformations and character sets and collations. pMA can generate graphics itself -- with thumbnails.

chapters 18 and 19 are about server administration, troubleshooting and where to get additional support.
A quick introduction
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