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Implementing Temporal Integrity Constraints Using an Active DBMS
August 1995 (vol. 7 no. 4)
pp. 566-582

Abstract—The paper proposes a general architecture for implementing temporal integrity constraints by compiling them into a set of active DBMS rules. The modularity of the design allows easy adaptation to different environments. Both differences in the specification languages and in the target rule systems can be easily accommodated. The advantages of this architecture are demonstrated on a particular temporal constraint compiler. This compiler allows automatic translation of integrity constraints formulated in Past Temporal Logic into rules of an active DBMS (in the current version of the compiler two active DBMS are supported: Starburst and INGRES). During the compilation the set of constraints is checked for the safe evaluation property. The result is a set of SQL statements that includes all the necessary rules needed for enforcing the original constraints. The rules are optimized to reduce the space overhead introduced by the integrity checking mechanism. There is no need for an additional runtime constraint monitor. When the rules are activated, all updates to the database that violate any of the constraints are automatically rejected (i.e., the corresponding transaction is aborted). In addition to straightforward implementation, this approach offers a clean separation of application programs and the integrity checking code.

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Index Terms:
Temporal databases, integrity constraints, dynamic constraints, constraint checking.
Jan Chomicki, David Toman, "Implementing Temporal Integrity Constraints Using an Active DBMS," IEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering, vol. 7, no. 4, pp. 566-582, Aug. 1995, doi:10.1109/69.404030
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