We have a table with a CHARACTER data type field. We apply a “>” row comparison between this field and another CHARACTER field in another table. What will be the results for records with field value of NULL

This is something  so many asked me because I also faced the same situation before, so having a NULL in a row when compared will give an UNKNOWN result.

The result will not be correct hence creates an ambiguity.

Reference : Dilip Kumar Jena ( https://sqlexplore.wordpress.com)

SQL SERVER – what are the DBCC commands that are commonly use for database maintenance

DBCC CHECKDB, DBCC CHECKTABLE, DBCC CHECKCATALOG, DBCC CHECKALLOC, DBCC SHOWCONTIG, DBCC SHRINKDATABASE, DBCC SHRINKFILE etc. But there are a whole load of DBCC commands which are very useful for DBAs. Check out SQL Server books online for more information.

Reference : Dilip Kumar Jena ( https://sqlexplore.wordpress.com )

SQL SERVER 2008 – How to rename a column

There are many ways where in we can  rename  a column but what I prefer is using predefined stored Procedure sp_rename .

Syntax :

exec sp_rename ‘tablename.ColumnName’, ‘NewColumnName’, ‘column’ –objecttype

EX: changing the column name “Name” to “FirstName”

create table Personal(ID int, Name varchar(50))

EXEC sp_rename ‘Personal.Name’, ‘FirstName’, ‘column’


The message displayed is a caution message that says when we alter the column name there is a possibility that it can be used in one or more stored procedures so make sure you update everything and then only change the name .

Reference : Dilip Kumar Jena ( https://sqlexplore.wordpress.com )

SQL SERVER – What is the difference between group by and order by

Group by controls the presentation of the rows, order by controls the presentation of the columns  for the results of the SELECT statement.

EX 1 : Group By helps us display any aggregate of any column based on a field what has repeated names.

use AdventureWorksDW2008R2


select Title,SUM(BaseRate) as Rate  from dbo.DimEmployee group by Title


EX 2 : Order By clause helps us display any table based on the values present on that particular column.

use AdventureWorksDW2008R2


select FirstName,Title  from dbo.DimEmployee order by FirstName

the difference is how we choose and what is the reuirement.

Reference : Dilip Kumar Jena ( https://sqlexplore.wordpress.com )

SQL SEREVER – What is a View and An Indexed View

 A view  is a virtual tables that is made up of one or more tables. It can be used for security purpose, hiding complex queries.

An Indexed view is a view that has unique clustered index created on it. This takes physical storage i.e it stores data. It will be used in OLAP, decision support where inserts/updates are low. It can be used in the following scenarios

1) Joins and aggregation of big tables.

2) Repeated joins of the same tables on the same keys.

Reference : Dilip Kumar Jena ( https://sqlexplore.wordpress.com )

SQL SERVER – What is a self join and Explain it with an example

Self join is just like any other join, except that two instances of the same table will be joined in the query. Here is an example: Employees table which contains rows for normal employees as well as managers. So, to find out the managers of all the employees, you need a self join.


CREATE TABLE emp ( empid int, mgrid int, empname char(10) )

INSERT emp SELECT 1,2,’Vyas’

INSERT emp SELECT 2,3,’Mohan’


INSERT emp SELECT 4,2,’Shridhar’

INSERT emp SELECT 5,2,’Sourabh’

SELECT t1.empname [Employee], t2.empname [Manager] FROM emp t1, emp t2 WHERE t1.mgrid = t2.empid

Here”s an advanced query’ using a LEFT OUTER JOIN that even returns the employees without managers (super bosses) 

SELECT t1.empname [Employee], COALESCE(t2.empname, ‘No manager’) [Manager] FROM emp t1 LEFT OUTER JOIN emp t2 ON t1.mgrid = t2.empid

Dilip Kumar Jena ( https://sqlexplore.wordpress.com )

SQL SERVER – What is a NULL value and What are the pros and cons of using NULLS

A NULL value takes up one byte of storage and indicates that a value is not present as opposed to a space or zero value.

A NULL is not a space or empty string or a zero. But some value undefined telling that value is not present.

From front End we can send the value as NULL by DBNull.Value

And in SQL SERVER it can be searched by following query

use AdventureWorksDW2008R2
Select * from dbo.DimCustomer where Suffix IS NULL

here it will return the rows with Suffix column containing a NULL means Noting.

Reference : Dilip Kumar Jena ( https://sqlexplore.wordpress.com )