As any Oracle DBA or Application Developer knows, every Oracle database comes complete with a bewildering array of built-in packages, any optional feature installed only serves to increase the number. The supplied Oracle documentation is confusing at best and wading through a whole shelf of documentation to find the parameter list for such-and-such a function can be very time consuming.
The three authors of this book have combed through the Oracle documentation to create a list of almost all the packages and their functions and procedures; together with a list of their parameters and a short description. In many cases the supplied information will be enough to use the function correctly.
Although many of the packages are quite simple, some provide much more advanced facilities, e.g. the packages used when replicating a database are complex and actually write other packages when executed. These packages are given more thorough coverage, including advice on how and when to use the packages as well as the basic 'function prototype' level of documentation.
This book won't replace the shelf-full of books that come with Oracle, but it will answer a number of the more commonly asked questions about the packaged functions. Anyone using an Oracle database day-to-day could do a lot worse than keep this title alongside the SQL Server Reference next to their terminal.