SQL Data Types

DECIMAL and NUMERIC

Fixed precision and scale decimal numbers. `DECIMAL` and `NUMERIC` are functionally equivalent.

Syntax:

```DECIMAL ( precision [ , scale] )
NUMERIC ( precision [ , scale] )
```

Examples:

```SELECT CAST(123 AS DECIMAL(5,2)) --returns 123.00
SELECT CAST(12345.12 AS NUMERIC(10,5)) --returns 12345.12000
```

FLOAT and REAL

Approximate*number data types for use with floating point numeric data.

```SELECT CAST( PI() AS FLOAT) --returns 3.14159265358979
SELECT CAST( PI() AS REAL) --returns 3.141593
```

Integers

Exact*number data types that use integer data.

Data type Range Storage
bigint -2^63 (-9,223,372,036,854,775,808) to 2^63-1 (9,223,372,036,854,775,807) 8 Bytes
int -2^31 (-2,147,483,648) to 2^31-1 (2,147,483,647) 4 Bytes
smallint -2^15 (-32,768) to 2^15-1 (32,767) 2 Bytes
tinyint 0 to 255 1 Byte

MONEY and SMALLMONEY

Data types that represent monetary or currency values.

Data type Range Storage
money -922,337,203,685,477.5808 to 922,337,203,685,477.5807 8 bytes
smallmoney -214,748.3648 to 214,748.3647 4 bytes

BINARY and VARBINARY

Binary data types of either fixed length or variable length.

Syntax:

```BINARY [ ( n_bytes ) ]
VARBINARY [ ( n_bytes | max ) ]
```

`n_bytes` can be any number from 1 to 8000 bytes. `max` indicates that the maximum storage space is 2^31-1.

Examples:

```SELECT CAST(12345 AS BINARY(10)) -- 0x00000000000000003039
SELECT CAST(12345 AS VARBINARY(10)) -- 0x00003039
```

CHAR and VARCHAR

String data types of either fixed length or variable length.

Syntax:

```CHAR [ ( n_chars ) ]
VARCHAR [ ( n_chars ) ]
```

Examples:

```SELECT CAST('ABC' AS CHAR(10)) -- 'ABC       ' (padded with spaces on the right)
SELECT CAST('ABC' AS VARCHAR(10)) -- 'ABC' (no padding due to variable character)
SELECT CAST('ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ' AS CHAR(10))  -- 'ABCDEFGHIJ' (truncated to 10 characters)
```

NCHAR and NVARCHAR

UNICODE string data types of either fixed length or variable length.

Syntax:

```NCHAR [ ( n_chars ) ]
NVARCHAR [ ( n_chars | MAX ) ]
```

Use `MAX` for very long strings that may exceed 8000 characters.

UNIQUEIDENTIFIER

A 16-byte GUID / UUID.

```DECLARE @GUID UNIQUEIDENTIFIER = NEWID();
SELECT @GUID -- 'E28B3BD9-9174-41A9-8508-899A78A33540'