Do you want to learn Teradata however have no clue how to start and what all to read then this post is for you. We receive so many requests from our blog readers asking if we can help them in learning Teradata. And when we ask what exactly they want to learn or any specific topic in Teradata they are looking for then they go mum. Understanding all the aspects of TERADATA RDBMS is not simple and definitely requires good time. You cannot become expert in a day or two. So I thought of writing a blog which should help in figuring out what all one must know about Teradata with respect to time.
Step 1 : Understand the requirement
The first step is the most important one. You should try to understand what exactly is the requirement for Teradata. Why is Teradata used in the project ? Is it used as the centralized Data Warehouse solution or it just have few applications running in it. Is it used for end to end DWH solution which is Sourcing Data from different SOURCES and maintains a huge volume data warehouse? Is it used for running few complex applications which were not performing well in existing data warehouse which is using some other RDBMS like Oracle, Sybase, SQL Server etc. Is it used for some security feature where the main data is stored in some other RDBMS however only the sensitive data is present in Teradata ? Is it the domain specific DATA MODEL like FSLDM which Teradata suggests resulted in Teradata as data warehouse too. Understanding the real reason behind using the Teradata is very important as it will filter down the possible roles and work which you may expect while working on it.
Step 2: Understanding your role
Once you are clear about the usage of Teradata then comes the next step of identifying your role in the project. Whether will you be working as Teradata SQL Developer or Designer or Modeler or Tester or may be a DBA. So say if your role is of a developer then you can further refine it by understanding in which phase of development will you be working. Possible options can be developing Staging area. So this will require you to have good understanding of Teradata Utilities primarily TPT, Fastload, Multiload as majority of the work will be related to loading of Source Files into Teradata Staging tables. If requirement is to develop data warehouse then you will be primarily using SQL code by invoking BTEQ utility. In many projects, Stored Procedures are used to load Data Warehouse from Staging tables. So in such cases you should learn about Teradata Stored Procedures and amazing SQL options available in it. If you are working as the designer then you need good understanding about various utilities and its features. You may not actually write the code but you have to design the best possible solution. So you may have to decide which Teradata Utility to use as per the requirement in design. Whether to create a single generic script to load all the tables or dedicated scripts one for each table for loading purpose etc. Similarly if your role is of a DBA, then you may not focus so much on SQL or Stored Procedure or Teradata Utility but other admin features like Creating/Removing users & database objects. ARCMAIN utility for backup purpose. TDM rules to keep your Teradata server healthy.
Step 3 : Know the topics
Now you know Teradata requirement in the project and the role you may be required to play, next comes the topics to cover. I will try to list down all possible Teradata topics and you may pick it one by one as per your priority.
- Teradata Basics (suitable for everyone)
- Teradata Introduction – RDBMS , Database Objects.
- Teradata Architecture – Session Controller, Parser, Optimiser , Dispatcher, BYNET, AMPs, vDisks.
- Space Management – Permanent, Spool & Temporary.
- Teradata Tables – Permanent, Volatile & Global Temporary
- Locks in Teradata – Access, Read, Write & Exclusive.
- Journals in Teradata – Permanent, Transient, Down-Amp Recovery
- Fallback & RAID mechanism. Hot Standby Node.
- Indexes – Unique Primary Index, Primary Index, Unique Secondary Index, Secondary Index, Partition Primary Index, Aggregate Join Index.
- Data Distribution in Teradata.
- Teradata SQL Assistant
- Teradata Advance (Pick topic from this once you are comfortable with Teradata Basics)
- Teradata SQL
*Note: The topics mentioned above does not cover all the possible learning topics in Teradata. However if someone covers all these topics he’ll have good knowledge of Teradata.