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SQL Fiddle: The Best Resource to Practice SQL online



Introduction

Learning how to write effective SQL queries is tough especially if you have a tight budget and finding decent resources to help you in practicing SQL online that can cover a wide range of topics is even more difficult.

SQL is an easy programming language that can be learned in a few hours but you should have the right resources to master the concepts. Although it is easy getting familiar with basic SQL concepts, it can be harder getting the real-world experience.

When you are trying to learn SQL queries but you are facing  a little difficulty in retaining database concepts then SQLFiddle can be a  wonderful choice to go. Moving ahead, let us discuss the Fiddle SQL database testing tool in detail and how it works for you to make the database development task easier. Enroll yourself for a demo session if you want to learn more about SQL.

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About SQL Fiddle

SQL fiddle tool is highly useful for beginners to advanced SQL programmers. Here are the few reasons why should you use it:

  • It allows you to practice SQL code online for a wider range of databases.
  • It helps you to get familiar with different databases before you enter the real programming world of SQL.
  • It allows you to share code and get help when needed. You can use SQL Fiddle for database generation, write queries, and send the unique URL to anyone you want to share the code.
  • It helps you to get help with queries you find difficult and increases your practical knowledge of SQL concepts.

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Why is the SQL Fiddle database testing tool useful ?

If you are not sure of basic database concepts then SQL Fiddle online website will be quite  useful to you. If you are a database developer then here are a few use-cases intended for you.

  1. When you want help with a tricky query and you would like to post a question to the Q/A site like Stack Overflow, SQL Fiddle can be useful. First of all, build a database schema and post the link to your question. As you use the site, unique URL will be created for each database and you just have to copy and paste the URL that you want to share. This link is available for everyone who wants to explore it. Now, users will be able to answer your query and they can send a backlink to your query.
  2. When you want to contrast or compare SQL statements for different database backends, SQL Fiddle can be useful. It lets you switch between different databases and quickly evaluate the query porting efforts or language options available for each environment.
  3. When a database platform is not available quickly but you want to check how a particular will look in that environment, SQL Fiddle can be useful for this purpose. With SQLFiddle, you don’t have to spin up a whole installation for your evaluation. You just create the database and queries directly into SQL Fiddle.

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How SQL Fiddle Works?

The DDL schema can be used to generate the private database on the fly. If anything changed in the DDL (even a single comma) then it is promoted to generate a new schema and you will be operating in a new database.

How SQL Fiddle Works?

SQL queries run within a single transaction and get immediately rolled-back once SQL executes. It is because the underlying database structure is the same for all queries that allow it to share the code online anonymously with unlimited users. Once you create the database schema, write queries, unique URLs refer to that particular schema and it is clearly visible in the address bar. This URL can be shared with anyone and they would be able to see what has been completed so far. Also, you can use your normal browser functions like back, forward or reload and observe the different stages of the work as you would expect.

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How are multiple database options different in SQL Fiddle?

Here are a few things worth pointing out about  the implementation of different databases on SQL Fiddle.

MySQL supports queries that read data from the schema like SELECT query. This database ensures a consistent schema when different users are fiddling with it. The other database options allow a wide range of queries supported in the backend. SQLite  runs in the browser and allows you to navigate through different browser options.

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Next, semicolon [;] button is added under each panel that determines how queries can be broken down for each panel before they are sent off to the database. This button pops down the list of different query terminators that are used as a flag to indicate query has ended .

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This terminator indicates how to parse the text before any query is executed. Most of the time , you don’t have to touch this button because its value is generally defined using stored procedures. Be careful while dividing the query into parts as it should be logical otherwise errors are certain if the procedure gets divided into incorrect parts.

SQLite Storage options at SQL Fiddle

SQLite  is a special case amongst different databases but it implemented the same way as others  with a backend host responsible for the query execution. SQLite allowed for some interesting alternatives that we will discuss below.

  1. The first option is SQL.js, the implementation of engine translated into JavaScript. It signifies that instead of using my servers and limited memory, you could offload the work on to your browser. It is a great achievement but SQL.js has few drawbacks too. First is that it taxes the browser a bit when loaded to the memory first. The other is that it supports limited browsers only, not all.
  2. The other alternative is WebSQL that makes use of SQLite  implementation and it comes built-in with some browsers like Chrome, Safari or more. The advantage of using WebSQL over SQL.js is that it loads the schema a bit faster and runs  the queries. The disadvantage is that it is not supported widely.

Together, these two storage options allow SQLite  to run within any browser. If one option does not support any particular browser then switch to another option. You may either get a better browser.

Read: How to Create Database in Microsoft SQL Server?

Who built SQL Fiddle and why?

A web developer, Jake Feasel from Anchorage, Alaska built SQL Fiddle online website in January 2012. He had been answering questions on Stack overflow Q/A site for  a long time related to main categories like SQL, jQuery, and Cold Fusion etc.He found JS Fiddle as a wonderful tool to answer JavaScript queries but nothing was available to help SQL developers till the time. So, Jake Feasel was inspired to build something that can help developers with  SQL questions. This was the reason why  SQLFiddle originated and is considered  as a wonderful tool today to assist SQL developers effectively.

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Conclusion

Before you appear for an interview, get familiar with SQL basics and practice SQL problems continuously. When you are sure that you have a decent knowledge of SQL concepts, you may appear for interviews. SQL Fiddle can work as a wonderful asset here for writing queries and practicing  SQL online.

Make sure that you are using the best coding practices while coding as bad coding habits may impact your programming career in the future. Above all, have fun, enjoy learning, and follow all the best practices as much as possible.

Read: How to Get Your Career as an SSIS Developer Rolling?


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