Window functions, to me, are the most profound feature supported by both standard
SQL and Microsoft SQL Server’s dialect—T-SQL. They allow you to perform
calculations against sets of rows in a flexible, clear, and efficient manner. The design of
window functions is ingenious, overcoming a number of shortcomings of the traditional
alternatives. The range of problems that window functions help solve is so wide that it
is well worth investing your time in learning those. SQL Server 2005 was the version in
which window functions were introduced initially. SQL Server 2012 then added more
complete support by enhancing some of the existing functions, as well as adding new
ones. This book covers both the SQL Server–specific support for window functions, as
well as standard SQL’s support, including elements that were not yet implemented in
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