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Procedural Language for SQL, better known as PL/SQL, is a proprietary extension to Oracle Corporation's SQL (Structured Query Language) and the Oracle database.

Oracle introduced PL/SQL in order to overcome some limitations in SQL and to provide a more complete programming solution mission-critical applications. PL/SQL has been included since version 6 of Oracle Database, and the PL/SQL engine was incorporated into SQL Forms, now known as Oracle Forms, since version 3. The PL/SQL compiler and interpreter are embedded into the Oracle Developer Suite.

PL/SQL is a full-fledged programming language. It allows users to write programs stored in a database that manage collections of SQL statements in a complete transaction.

SQL is a programming language that enables users to perform actions in a database, such as querying, adding, deleting, and changing data, but the main feature of SQL (non-procedural) is also a drawback. SQL is not a procedural language that programmers can use to code a logical sequence of steps for making a decision, and instructing the computer to perform tasks. For that, a procedural language, like PL/SQL, is required. Oracle views PL/SQL to be a procedural language extension of SQL.

Some of the features of PL/SQL is that the language is highly structured, readable, and accessible. It is portable for Oracle and an embedded language. It is also a high-performance, highly-integrated database language. It provides for tight integration with SQL, offering improved performance, increased productivity, and tighter security.

PL/SQL was modeled after Ada, a programming language built for the US Department of Defense.

The focus of this guide is on PL/SQL, also known as Procedural Language for SQL. Websites whose chief topics are the language itself, and any tools designed to facilitate the use of PL/SQL, or any user groups, forums, tutorials, or guides are appropriate subjects for this category.



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