Question Consider lucky Rent-A-Car’s website, which contains its database, as described in figure 5.18.  Describe, in detail, the steps taken in both hardware and software to reach the database when a customer is making a reservation for rental car over the web. Figure 5. 18 shows the relationship database for the lucky Rent-A-Car example described earlier. There is a one- to-many relationship from manufacturers to cars and another one- to- many relationship from cars to maintenance events.  The former requires the manufacturer primary key.  Manufacture name, to be placed in the car relation as a foreign key.  The latter requires the car primary key.  Car Serial Number, to be placed in the Maintenance relation as a foreign key.  The many- to- many relationship among cars and customers requires the creation of a new relation, the rental relation.  Each record of the Rental relation records the rental of a particular car by particular customer.  Note that the combination of the Car Serial Number and Customer Number attributes is not sufficient as the primary key of the rental relation.  A given customer might have rented a given car more than once.  Adding Rental Date to the primary key achieve the needed uniqueness.

To understand the steps taken in both hardware and software to reach the database when a customer is making a reservation for a rental car over the web, let’s break it down into two main components: hardware and software.

1. Client Device: The customer accesses the lucky Rent-A-Car’s website using a client device such as a laptop, smartphone, or tablet. The device must have a web browser and an active internet connection to connect to the website securely.

2. Web Server: The customer’s request is received by the web server, which is a high-performance computer dedicated to hosting the website. The web server handles the communication between the client device and the database system.

3. Database Server: The web server communicates with the database server, which is a separate computer responsible for storing and managing the database. The database server must be powerful enough to handle multiple requests from various clients simultaneously.

4. Network Infrastructure: The client device, web server, and database server are connected through a network infrastructure, including switches, routers, and cables. This infrastructure ensures that data can flow between the client device and the database server.

1. Web Application: The customer interacts with the lucky Rent-A-Car’s web application, which is designed to facilitate the rental reservation process. The web application runs on the web server and is responsible for handling customer requests, validating input, and retrieving data from the database.

2. Database Management System (DBMS): The DBMS is the software that manages the database and provides a way to store, retrieve, and manipulate data. In this case, the DBMS stores the reservation details, including customer information, car details, and rental dates. It ensures data integrity and handles concurrent access by multiple users.

3. SQL (Structured Query Language): To access the database, the web application uses SQL, a programming language for managing relational databases. SQL queries are used to retrieve relevant data from the database based on the customer’s reservation request. For example, the web application would execute a SQL query to fetch available cars, considering factors such as location, date, and car type.

4. API (Application Programming Interface): The web application communicates with the database server through an API provided by the DBMS. The API acts as an intermediary between the web application and the database, allowing the web application to send SQL queries, receive query results, and update the database.

To summarize, when a customer makes a reservation for a rental car over the web, the process involves the customer accessing the lucky Rent-A-Car’s website using a client device, which communicates with the web server. The web server then interacts with the database server using the web application and the provided API. The database server, running the DBMS, manages and retrieves the relevant data using SQL queries, enabling the reservation process. The hardware and software components work together to ensure a seamless and efficient reservation experience for the customer.

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