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SQL Data Types

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Data types and ranges for Microsoft Access, MySQL and SQL Server.


Microsoft Access Data Types

Data type Description Storage
Text Use for text or combinations of text and numbers. 255 characters maximum  
Memo Memo is used for larger amounts of text. Stores up to 65,536 characters. Note: You cannot sort a memo field. However, they are searchable  
Byte Allows whole numbers from 0 to 255 1 byte
Integer Allows whole numbers between -32,768 and 32,767 2 bytes
Long Allows whole numbers between -2,147,483,648 and 2,147,483,647 4 bytes
Single Single precision floating-point. Will handle most decimals 4 bytes
Double Double precision floating-point. Will handle most decimals 8 bytes
Currency Use for currency. Holds up to 15 digits of whole dollars, plus 4 decimal places. Tip: You can choose which country's currency to use 8 bytes
AutoNumber AutoNumber fields automatically give each record its own number, usually starting at 1 4 bytes
Date/Time Use for dates and times 8 bytes
Yes/No A logical field can be displayed as Yes/No, True/False, or On/Off. In code, use the constants True and False (equivalent to -1 and 0). Note: Null values are not allowed in Yes/No fields 1 bit
Ole Object Can store pictures, audio, video, or other BLOBs (Binary Large OBjects) up to 1GB
Hyperlink Contain links to other files, including web pages  
Lookup Wizard Let you type a list of options, which can then be chosen from a drop-down list 4 bytes


MySQL Data Types

In MySQL there are three main types : text, number, and Date/Time types.

Text types:

Data type Description
CHAR(size) Holds a fixed length string (can contain letters, numbers, and special characters). The fixed size is specified in parenthesis. Can store up to 255 characters
VARCHAR(size) Holds a variable length string (can contain letters, numbers, and special characters). The maximum size is specified in parenthesis. Can store up to 255 characters. Note: If you put a greater value than 255 it will be converted to a TEXT type
TINYTEXT Holds a string with a maximum length of 255 characters
TEXT Holds a string with a maximum length of 65,535 characters
BLOB For BLOBs (Binary Large OBjects). Holds up to 65,535 bytes of data
MEDIUMTEXT Holds a string with a maximum length of 16,777,215 characters
MEDIUMBLOB For BLOBs (Binary Large OBjects). Holds up to 16,777,215 bytes of data
LONGTEXT Holds a string with a maximum length of 4,294,967,295 characters
LONGBLOB For BLOBs (Binary Large OBjects). Holds up to 4,294,967,295 bytes of data
ENUM(x,y,z,etc.) Let you enter a list of possible values. You can list up to 65535 values in an ENUM list. If a value is inserted that is not in the list, a blank value will be inserted.

Note: The values are sorted in the order you enter them.

You enter the possible values in this format: ENUM('X','Y','Z')

SET Similar to ENUM except that SET may contain up to 64 list items and can store more than one choice

Number types:

Data type Description
TINYINT(size) -128 to 127 normal. 0 to 255 UNSIGNED*. The maximum number of digits may be specified in parenthesis
SMALLINT(size) -32768 to 32767 normal. 0 to 65535 UNSIGNED*. The maximum number of digits may be specified in parenthesis
MEDIUMINT(size) -8388608 to 8388607 normal. 0 to 16777215 UNSIGNED*. The maximum number of digits may be specified in parenthesis
INT(size) -2147483648 to 2147483647 normal. 0 to 4294967295 UNSIGNED*. The maximum number of digits may be specified in parenthesis
BIGINT(size) -9223372036854775808 to 9223372036854775807 normal. 0 to 18446744073709551615 UNSIGNED*. The maximum number of digits may be specified in parenthesis
FLOAT(size,d) A small number with a floating decimal point. The maximum number of digits may be specified in the size parameter. The maximum number of digits to the right of the decimal point is specified in the d parameter
DOUBLE(size,d) A large number with a floating decimal point. The maximum number of digits may be specified in the size parameter. The maximum number of digits to the right of the decimal point is specified in the d parameter
DECIMAL(size,d) A DOUBLE stored as a string , allowing for a fixed decimal point. The maximum number of digits may be specified in the size parameter. The maximum number of digits to the right of the decimal point is specified in the d parameter

*The integer types have an extra option called UNSIGNED. Normally, the integer goes from an negative to positive value. Adding the UNSIGNED attribute will move that range up so it starts at zero instead of a negative number.

Date types:

Data type Description
DATE() A date. Format: YYYY-MM-DD

Note: The supported range is from '1000-01-01' to '9999-12-31'

DATETIME() *A date and time combination. Format: YYYY-MM-DD HH:MM:SS

Note: The supported range is from '1000-01-01 00:00:00' to '9999-12-31 23:59:59'

TIMESTAMP() *A timestamp. TIMESTAMP values are stored as the number of seconds since the Unix epoch ('1970-01-01 00:00:00' UTC). Format: YYYY-MM-DD HH:MM:SS

Note: The supported range is from '1970-01-01 00:00:01' UTC to '2038-01-09 03:14:07' UTC

TIME() A time. Format: HH:MM:SS

Note: The supported range is from '-838:59:59' to '838:59:59'

YEAR() A year in two-digit or four-digit format.

Note: Values allowed in four-digit format: 1901 to 2155. Values allowed in two-digit format: 70 to 69, representing years from 1970 to 2069

*Even if DATETIME and TIMESTAMP return the same format, they work very differently. In an INSERT or UPDATE query, the TIMESTAMP automatically set itself to the current date and time. TIMESTAMP also accepts various formats, like YYYYMMDDHHMMSS, YYMMDDHHMMSS, YYYYMMDD, or YYMMDD.


SQL Server Data Types

Character strings:

Data type Description Storage
char(n) Fixed-length character string. Maximum 8,000 characters n
varchar(n) Variable-length character string. Maximum 8,000 characters  
varchar(max) Variable-length character string. Maximum 1,073,741,824 characters  
text Variable-length character string. Maximum 2GB of text data  

Unicode strings:

Data type Description Storage
nchar(n) Fixed-length Unicode data. Maximum 4,000 characters  
nvarchar(n) Variable-length Unicode data. Maximum 4,000 characters  
nvarchar(max) Variable-length Unicode data. Maximum 536,870,912 characters  
ntext Variable-length Unicode data. Maximum 2GB of text data  

Binary types:

Data type Description Storage
bit Allows 0, 1, or NULL  
binary(n) Fixed-length binary data. Maximum 8,000 bytes  
varbinary(n) Variable-length binary data. Maximum 8,000 bytes  
varbinary(max) Variable-length binary data. Maximum 2GB  
image Variable-length binary data. Maximum 2GB  

Number types:

Data type Description Storage
tinyint Allows whole numbers from 0 to 255 1 byte
smallint Allows whole numbers between -32,768 and 32,767 2 bytes
int Allows whole numbers between -2,147,483,648 and 2,147,483,647 4 bytes
bigint Allows whole numbers between -9,223,372,036,854,775,808 and 9,223,372,036,854,775,807 8 bytes
decimal(p,s) Fixed precision and scale numbers.

Allows numbers from -10^38 +1 to 10^38 1.

The p parameter indicates the maximum total number of digits that can be stored (both to the left and to the right of the decimal point). p must be a value from 1 to 38. Default is 18.

The s parameter indicates the maximum number of digits stored to the right of the decimal point. s must be a value from 0 to p. Default value is 0

5-17 bytes
numeric(p,s) Fixed precision and scale numbers.

Allows numbers from -10^38 +1 to 10^38 1.

The p parameter indicates the maximum total number of digits that can be stored (both to the left and to the right of the decimal point). p must be a value from 1 to 38. Default is 18.

The s parameter indicates the maximum number of digits stored to the right of the decimal point. s must be a value from 0 to p. Default value is 0

5-17 bytes
smallmoney Monetary data from -214,748.3648 to 214,748.3647 4 bytes
money Monetary data from -922,337,203,685,477.5808 to 922,337,203,685,477.5807 8 bytes
float(n) Floating precision number data from -1.79E + 308 to 1.79E + 308.

The n parameter indicates whether the field should hold 4 or 8 bytes. float(24) holds a 4-byte field and float(53) holds an 8-byte field. Default value of n is 53.

4 or 8 bytes
real Floating precision number data from -3.40E + 38 to 3.40E + 38 4 bytes

Date types:

Data type Description Storage
datetime From January 1, 1753 to December 31, 9999 with an accuracy of 3.33 milliseconds 8 bytes
datetime2 From January 1, 0001 and December 31, 9999 with an accuracy of 100 nanoseconds 6-8 bytes
smalldatetime From January 1, 1900 to June 6, 2079 with an accuracy of 1 minute 4 bytes
date Store a date only. From January 1, 0001 to December 31, 9999 3 bytes
time Store a time only to an accuracy of 100 nanoseconds 3-5 bytes
datetimeoffset The same as datetime2 with the addition of a time zone offset 8-10 bytes
timestamp Stores a unique number that gets updated every time a row gets created or modified. The timestamp value is based upon an internal clock and does not correspond to real time. Each table may have only one timestamp variable  

Other data types:

Data type Description
sql_variant Stores up to 8,000 bytes of data of various data types, except text, ntext, and timestamp
uniqueidentifier Stores a globally unique identifier (GUID)
xml Stores XML formatted data. Maximum 2GB
cursor Stores a reference to a cursor used for database operations
table Stores a result-set for later processing
 
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