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Using the "IF" function in a column Expand / Collapse
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Posted Sunday, October 28, 2012 10:23 AM
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Is it possible to use the "IF" function in a column at design time as the value for that field? I do it regularly in Excel with no problem but I am new to SQL Server and have been unable to figure this one out. I have been using 3 of my own books plus the Online Books but to no avail. If I cannot do it in design, can I create a script (or a stored proceedure) that will do it at run time? Thanks, JRichards54
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Posted Sunday, October 28, 2012 10:48 AM
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jrichards54 (10/28/2012)
Is it possible to use the "IF" function in a column at design time as the value for that field? I do it regularly in Excel with no problem but I am new to SQL Server and have been unable to figure this one out. I have been using 3 of my own books plus the Online Books but to no avail. If I cannot do it in design, can I create a script (or a stored proceedure) that will do it at run time? Thanks, JRichards54


SQL Server only permits constants as default values. You could use a computed column to generate (and contain) a value for you, or a check constraint to ensure that an INSERTED/UPDATEd value matches your criteria. In practice? I'd put the logic into the INSERT script.



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Post #1378040
Posted Sunday, October 28, 2012 11:22 AM
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Thank you for your reply. I appreciate your insights and recommendations. Have a good day. JRichards54
Post #1378043
Posted Sunday, October 28, 2012 9:12 PM


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ChrisM@home (10/28/2012)
jrichards54 (10/28/2012)
Is it possible to use the "IF" function in a column at design time as the value for that field? I do it regularly in Excel with no problem but I am new to SQL Server and have been unable to figure this one out. I have been using 3 of my own books plus the Online Books but to no avail. If I cannot do it in design, can I create a script (or a stored proceedure) that will do it at run time? Thanks, JRichards54


SQL Server only permits constants as default values. ...


True but... you can construct an IF-like syntax using CASE as a default as long as you don't reference any column names in the CASE:

CREATE TABLE #Temp
(ID INT IDENTITY
,Value1 CHAR(1) DEFAULT ('A')
,Value2 CHAR(1) DEFAULT (CASE WHEN GETDATE() > '2012-10-29' THEN 'B' END))

INSERT INTO #Temp (Value1)
SELECT NULL UNION ALL SELECT 'B'

SELECT * FROM #Temp

DROP TABLE #Temp






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Post #1378084
Posted Monday, October 29, 2012 8:28 AM


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In addition to expressions, you can reference user defined functions or non-deterministic functions for a column default.
However, a default can't reference other columns in the table, you would need a computed column or view for that.
Post #1378269
Posted Tuesday, November 6, 2012 8:33 AM
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dwain.c (10/28/2012)
ChrisM@home (10/28/2012)
jrichards54 (10/28/2012)
Is it possible to use the "IF" function in a column at design time as the value for that field? I do it regularly in Excel with no problem but I am new to SQL Server and have been unable to figure this one out. I have been using 3 of my own books plus the Online Books but to no avail. If I cannot do it in design, can I create a script (or a stored proceedure) that will do it at run time? Thanks, JRichards54


SQL Server only permits constants as default values. ...


True but... you can construct an IF-like syntax using CASE as a default as long as you don't reference any column names in the CASE:

CREATE TABLE #Temp
(ID INT IDENTITY
,Value1 CHAR(1) DEFAULT ('A')
,Value2 CHAR(1) DEFAULT (CASE WHEN GETDATE() > '2012-10-29' THEN 'B' END))

INSERT INTO #Temp (Value1)
SELECT NULL UNION ALL SELECT 'B'

SELECT * FROM #Temp

DROP TABLE #Temp





You wrote above: "as long as you don't reference any column names in the CASE:"

Thank you but this will not work for me as the VALUE in that column does change and that VALUE is necessary to accurately compute the result of the IF statement. The VALUE of that column (QtyInPkg) can vary from 14, 30, 60 , 90, 180, and 365 and these are all Integers and represent days. The "If" statement works just fine if I use the any of the constants but does not work if I use the column name (QtyInPkg). Thanks again and have a good day. JRichards54
Post #1381606
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