Chpt 7: Tables and Constraints

Tables and Constraints
Logical Progression of Steps in Creating a
Database Environment
1. Install Oracle database binaries (Chapter 1)
2. Create database (Chapter 2)
3. Establish a way to manage your environment (Chapter 3)
4. Create and manage tablespaces and datafiles (Chapter 4)
5. Understand and manage control files, online redo logs, and
archiving (Chapter 5)
6. Create users and establish basic security (Chapter 6)
7. Create database objects (Chapter 7, 8, 9)
Tables and Constraints
• A table is the basic storage container for data in a
database. You create and modify the table structure via
Data Definition Language (DDL) statements such as
• You access and manipulate table data via Data
Manipulation Language (DML) statements (INSERT,
• A constraint is a mechanism for enforcing that data
adheres to business rules
• Examples of constraints: Primary key uniqueness, not null
values, relationships between data in tables (foreign keys)
Understanding Table Types
• Heap-organized
• Temporary
• Index-organized (IOT)
• Partitioned
• Materialized view (MV)
• Clustered
• External
• Nested
• Object
Understanding Data Types
• Character
• Numeric
• Date/Time
Note: For Oracle Database 11g and lower, 4,000 was the
largest size allowed for a VARCHAR2 or NVARCHAR2 data
type. In Oracle Database 12c and higher, you can specify up to
32,767 characters in a VARCHAR2 or NVARCHAR2 data type.
Prior to 12c, if you wanted to store character data larger greater
than 4,000 characters, the logical choice was a CLOB (see the
section “LOB,” later in this chapter, for more details).
Index-organized (IOT)
Choosing Table Features
• If a column always contains numeric data, make it a
number data type.
If you have a business rule that defines the length and
precision of a number field, then enforce it; for example,
NUMBER(7,2). If you don’t have a business rule, make it
For character data that is of variable length, use
Use DATE and TIMESTAMP data types appropriately.
Consider setting the physical attribute PCTFREE to a
value higher than the default of 10% if the table initially
has rows inserted with null values that are later updated
with large values.
Index-organized (IOT)
Choosing Table Features (continued)
• Most tables should be created with a primary key.
• Create a numeric surrogate key to be the primary key for
each table. Populate the surrogate key from a sequence.
• Create a unique key for the logical business key; a
recognizable combination of columns that makes a row
• Define foreign keys where appropriate.
• Consider special features such as virtual columns, readonly, parallel, compression, no logging, and so on.
Index-organized (IOT)
Choosing Table Features (continued)
• Use standards when naming tables, columns, constraints,
triggers, indexes, and so on.
If you have a business rule that specifies the maximum length
of a column, then use that length, as opposed to making all
columns VARCHAR2(4000).
Specify a separate tablespace for the table and indexes.
Let tables and indexes inherit storage attributes from the
Create primary-key constraints out of line.
Create comments for the tables and columns.
If a column should always have a value, then enforce it with a
NOT NULL constraint.
Create audit-type columns, such as CREATE_DTT and
UPDATE_DTT , that are automatically populated with default
values and/or triggers.
Creating a Heap-organized Table
• Use the CREATE TABLE statement to create tables
create table d_sources(
d_source_id number not null,
source_type varchar2(32),
create_dtt date default sysdate not null,
update_dtt timestamp(5)
More Complex Create Table Statement
create table operating_systems(
operating_system_id number(19, 0) not null,
default sysdate not null,
constraint operating_systems_pk primary key
using index tablespace inv_mgmt_index
tablespace inv_mgmt_data
Implementing Virtual Columns
• A virtual column is based on one or more existing
columns from the same table and/or a combination of
constants, SQL functions, and user-defined PL/SQL
Virtual columns aren’t stored on disk
Evaluated at runtime when the SQL query executes
Virtual columns can be indexed and can have stored
Tip: Consider using an indexed virtual column instead of
using a function based index
Advantages of Virtual Columns
• You can create an index on a virtual column. Internally,
Oracle creates a function-based index.
• You can store statistics in a virtual column that can be
used by the cost-based optimizer (CBO).
• Virtual columns can be referenced in WHERE clauses.
• Virtual columns are permanently defined in the database.
There is one central definition of such a column
Virtual Column Example
create table inv(
inv_id number
,inv_count number
,inv_status generated always as (
case when inv_count <= 100 then 'GETTING LOW'
when inv_count > 100 then 'OKAY'
Virtual Column Considerations
• You can only define a virtual column on a regular heap-
organized table. You can’t define a virtual column on an
index-organized table, an external table, a temporary
table, object tables, or cluster tables.
• Virtual columns can’t reference other virtual columns.
• Virtual columns can only reference columns from the table
in which the virtual column is defined.
• The output of a virtual column must be a scalar value (a
single value, not a set of values).
Implementing Invisible Columns
• Starting with Oracle Database 12c, you can create
invisible columns. When a column is invisible, it cannot be
viewed via
• DESCRIBE command
• SELECT * (to access all of a table’s columns)
• Describes within an Oracle Call Interface (OCI)
• However, the inivisible column can be accessed if
explicitly specified in a SELECT clause or referenced
directly in a DML statement (INSERT, UPDATE, DELETE,
or MERGE).
• Invisible columns can also be indexed (just like visible
Reasons for Read-Only Tables
• The data in the table is historical and should never be
updated in normal circumstances.
• You’re performing some maintenance on the table and
want to ensure that it doesn’t change while it’s being
• You want to drop the table, but before you do, you want to
place it in read-only mode to better determine if any users
are attempting to update the table.
SQL> alter table inv read only;
SQL> alter table inv read write;
12c Autoincrementing (Identity) Column
• Starting with Oracle Database 12c, you can define a
column that is automatically populated and incremented
when inserting data.
• This feature is ideal for automatically populating primary
key columns.
• Prior to Oracle Database 12c, you would have to create a
sequence manually and then access the sequence when
inserting into the table. Sometimes, DBAs would create
triggers on tables to simulate an autoincrementing column
based on a sequence (see Chapter 9 for details).
12c Autoincrementing Column
• You define an autoincrementing (identity) column with the
GENERATED AS IDENTITY clause. This example creates a table
with primary key column that will be automatically populated and
create table inv(
inv_id number generated as identity
,inv_desc varchar2(30 char));
alter table inv add constraint inv_pk primary key (inv_id);
• Now, you can populate the table without having to specify the primary
key value:
insert into inv (inv_desc) values ('Book');
insert into inv (inv_desc) values ('Table');
Avoiding Extent Allocation Delays When
Creating Tables
• Starting with Oracle Database 11g R2, with non-partitioned
heap-organized tables created in locally managed tablespaces,
the initial segment creation is deferred.
• Allows for a faster installation of applications that have a large
number of tables and indexes; this improves installation speed,
especially when you have thousands of objects.
• As a DBA, your space usage reports may initially confuse you
when you notice that there is no space allocated for objects.
• The creation of the first row will take a slightly longer time than
in previous versions (because now Oracle allocates the first
extent based on the creation of the first row). For most
applications, this performance degradation is not noticeable.
Avoiding Extent Allocation Delays When
Creating Tables (continued)
SQL> create table f_regs(reg_id number, reg_name varchar2(200));
SQL> select count(*) from user_segments where segment_name='F_REGS';
SQL> insert into f_regs values(1,'BRDSTN');
1 row created.
SQL> select count(*) from user_segments where segment_name='F_REGS';
• You can disable the deferred segment creation feature by setting the database
initialization parameter DEFERRED_SEGMENT_CREATION to FALSE
• Deferred segment generation also applies to partitioned tables and indexes. An
extent will not be allocated until the initial record is inserted into a given extent.
Parallel SQL Execution
• For large table operations, consider using PARALLEL
create table inv_apr_10
parallel 2
as select * from inv
where create_dtt >= '01-apr-10' and create_dtt < '01-may10';
Compressing Data for Direct Path
• Use the COMPRESS clause to enable compression either
when creating, altering, or moving an existing table.
• Load data via a direct path mechanism such as CREATE
• Prior to Oracle Database 11g R2, basic compression was
referred to as DSS compression and enabled via the
This syntax is deprecated in Oracle Database 11g R2 and
Compressing Data for Direct Path
Loading (continued)
create table regs_dss
as select reg_id, reg_name
from regs;
• The prior statement creates a table with compressed data in it.
• Any subsequent direct path–load operations will also load the
data in a compressed format.
• You can use either the COMPRESS clause or the COMPRESS
BASIC clause to enable the basic table compression feature.
The COMPRESS clause and COMPRESS BASIC clause are
Compressing Data for All DML
• Use the COMPRESS FOR OLTP clause when creating a
table to enable data compression when using regular
DML statements to manipulate data
create table regs
(reg_id number
,reg_name varchar2(2000)
) row store compress advanced;
Note 10g and 11g syntax for table compression is slightly
different, refer to Oracle’s old documentation for details.
Compressing Data at the Column Level
• The Oracle Exadata product allows for column level
compression (hybrid columnar compression)
• To enable hybrid columnar compression, when creating a
table, use either the COMPRESS FOR QUERY or the
create table f_regs(
reg_id number
,reg_desc varchar2(4000))
compress for query;
Compressing Data at the Column Level
• These levels are listed here from the lowest level of
column level compression to the highest level:
• COMPRESS FOR QUERY is appropriate for bulk load
operations on heap-organized tables that are infrequently
• COMPRESS FOR ARCHIVE maximizes the degree of
compression and is more appropriate for data that is
stored for long periods of time and will not be updated
Maximizing Data Loading Speeds
• Set the table’s logging attribute to NOLOGGING;, this
minimizes the generation redo for direct path operations
(this feature has no effect on regular DML operations).
• Use a direct path loading feature, such as the following:
• INSERT /*+ APPEND */ on queries that use a subquery for
determining which records are inserted.
• INSERT /*+ APPEND_VALUES */ on queries that use a VALUES
Creating a Table from a Query
• Create table as select (CTAS)
create table cwp_user_profile_101910
as select * from cwp_user_profile;
create table cwp_user_profile_101910
tablespace staging_data
parallel 2
as select * from cwp_user_profile_tab;
Modifying a Table
• Renaming the table
• Adding a column
• Altering a column
• Renaming a column
• Dropping a column
Obtaining the Needed Lock
• In Oracle Database 11g and higher, set the
• Avoids the ORA-00054: resource busy and acquire with
NOWAIT specified or timeout expired
SQL> alter session set ddl_lock_timeout=100;
Reasons for Renaming a Table
• To make the table conform to standards
• To better determine whether the table is being used
before you drop it
SQL> rename inv_mgmt to inv_mgmt_old;
Adding a Column
• Requirements often change after initially creating the
SQL> alter table inv add(inv_count number);
Altering a Column
• Requirements often change after the column definitions
are defined and implemented
SQL> alter table inv modify inv_desc varchar2(256);
Renaming a Column
• Sometimes requirements change, and you want to modify
the column name to better reflect what the column is used
• If you’re planning to drop a column, it doesn’t hurt to
rename the column first to better determine whether any
users or applications are accessing the column.
SQL> alter table inv rename column inv_count to inv_amt;
Dropping a Column
• Sometimes column are initially created and never used, or
requirements change after the table was created
SQL> alter table inv drop (inv_name);
Displaying Table DDL
• Query the data dictionary
• Use the exp and imp utilities
• Use Data Pump
• Use the DBMS_METADATA package
• Example using DBMS_METADATA:
SQL> set long 10000
SQL> select dbms_metadata.get_ddl('TABLE','INV') from
Dropping a Table
• Consider renaming the table before dropping it
SQL> drop table emp;
• Use PURGE to drop table permanently (remove it from
the recyclebin):
SQL> drop table emp purge;
Undropping a Table
• When you drop a table (without PURGE clause), the table
is renamed, this is known as placing it in the recyclebin
• View recylebin:
SQL> show recyclebin
• To undrop a table:
SQL> flashback table purchases to before drop;
Removing Data from a Table Using
SQL> delete from inv;
SQL> commit;
Removing Data from a Table Using
• TRUNCATE is a DDL statement
• Oracle automatically commits the statement
SQL> truncate table computer_systems;
Detecting Table with Significant Free
Space Below High Water Mark Using
1. SQL> set autotrace trace statistics
2. Run the query that performs the full-table scan.
3. Compare the number of rows processed to the number
of logical I/Os (memory and disk accesses).
Detecting Table with Significant Free
Space Below High Water Mark Using
=> user,
=> 'INV',
=> 'TABLE',
Removing Free Space Below High Water
• Use a TRUNCATE statement (removes all data from the
SQL> alter table inv enable row movement;
SQL> alter table inv shrink space;
SQL> alter table parties move tablespace mts;
Creating a Temporary Table
• Sometimes applications need a temporary table for the
duration of the session
• Used to hold data temporarily by the application during
the session
create global temporary table today_regs
on commit preserve rows
as select * from f_registrations
where create_dtt > sysdate - 1;
Creating an Index-Organized Table
• IOTs are efficient when most of the columns in the table are part of
the primary key
• IOTs uses a b-tree index structure
create table prod_sku
(prod_sku_id number,
sku varchar2(256),
create_dtt timestamp(5),
constraint prod_sku_pk primary key(prod_sku_id)
organization index
including sku
pctthreshold 30
tablespace inv_mgmt_data
tablespace mts;
Managing Constraints
• Primary key
• Unique key
• Foreign key
• Check
• Not null
Creating Primary-Key Constraints
• Guarantees uniqueness for primary key columns
• Most tables should always include a primary key
• Example:
create table dept(
dept_id number,
dept_desc varchar2(30),
constraint dept_pk primary key (dept_id)
using index tablespace prod_index);
Enforcing Unique Key Values
• Use unique keys to enforce uniqueness on columns that
aren’t part of the primary key
• Example:
create table dept(
dept_id number
,dept_desc varchar2(30) constraint dept_desc_uk1
unique using index tablespace prod_index);
Creating Foreign-key Constraints
• Foreign-key constraints are used to ensure that a column value
(or multiple columns) is contained within a defined list of values
in a column or columns in another table
• Used to enforce that a child record has a corresponding record
in a parent table
• Parent table must contain a PK or UK constraint on parent
table columns referenced in the child table foreign key columns
• Example:
create table emp(
emp_id number,
name varchar2(30),
dept_id constraint emp_dept_fk references dept(dept_id));
Checking for Specific Data Conditions
• Check constraints work well for enforcing a column value
is of a specific value
• Works well for static, fairly small list of know values, for
example Y or N, 0 or 1, and so on
• Example:
CREATE table emp(
emp_id number,
emp_name varchar2(30),
st_flg number(1) constraint "st_flg must be 0 or 1" check
(st_flg in (0,1))
Enforcing Not Null Conditions
• Business requirements may dictate that a column always
contain a value
• Example:
create table emp(
emp_id number,
emp_name varchar2(30) constraint emp_name_nn not
Disabling Constraints
• Sometimes you will need to disable constraints on a table
• Easier than dropping and re-creating
• Prior to truncating a table that has a primary key
referenced by a foreign key; in this scenario, first disable
the constraints and then truncate, then re-enable
• Example:
SQL> alter table f_sales disable constraint f_sales_fk1;
• DBAs must know how to create and maintain tables and
• Several new 11g features related to tables were
introduced in this chapter
• Tables are the basic object used to store data
• Constraints enforce business rules related to data

similar documents