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I, Rohit Garg, am working as Consultant in IT Company. I am having an around 5 years of experience in MSSQL server & other Microsoft technologies. I am working as DBA in Microsoft SQL Server from last 5 years in e-Commerce, Telecom, Finance domain. In this tenure, I got a chance of working as Database administrator, Developer and trainer on SQL server 2000 to SQL Server 2012. I am holding Master’s degree in Computer Science along with certification in SQL Server & .Net. I like to learn new things by hand-on experience on regular basis. This journey is so far is delightful & valuable with the addition of wonderful friends.

Sequence – Long awaited feature

As per BOL (https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ff878058(v=sql.110).aspx) : A sequence is a user-defined schema-bound object that generates a sequence of numeric values according to the specification with which the sequence was created. The sequence of numeric values is generated in an ascending or descending order at a defined interval and may cycle (repeat) as requested. Sequences, unlike identity columns, are not associated with tables. An application refers to a sequence object to receive its next value. The relationship between sequences and tables is controlled by the application. User applications can reference a sequence object and coordinate the values keys across multiple rows and tables.

This feature is really a good to have and this feature is same as Oracle’s sequence objects.  A sequence object generates sequence of unique numeric values as per specifications mentioned.

A sequence can be defined as any integer data type. If the data type is not specified, a sequence defaults to bigint. A sequence value is not effected by SQL server restart. Many people think sequence is similar to identity. But big difference is sequence object is independent of a table while identity columns are attached to a table.

Create Sequence

CREATE SEQUENCE TEMPSEQ AS INT

START WITH 1 — START WITH VALUE 1

INCREMENT BY 1– INCREMENT WITH VALUE 1

MINVALUE 0 — MINIMUM VALUE TO START IS 0

MAXVALUE 5 — MAXIMUM IT CAN GO TO 5

NO CYCLE — DO NOT GO ABOVE 5

CACHE 2 — INCREMENT 2 VALUES IN MEMORY RATHER THAN INCREMENTING FROM IO

Generate value from Sequence

SELECT NEXT VALUE FOR TEMPSEQ AS seq_no;

Error when Sequence reach to MAX value

Msg 11728, Level 16, State 1, Line 18

The sequence object ‘TEMPSEQ’ has reached its minimum or maximum value. Restart the sequence object to allow new values to be generated.

Alter Sequence to RESTART it from 1 or desired value

ALTER SEQUENCE TEMPSEQ RESTART WITH 1

 

Create Sequence with CYCLE mode, where value will be reset to MIN value when it reaches to MAX value

CREATE SEQUENCE TEMPSEQ_CYCLE AS INT

START WITH 1 — START WITH VALUE 1

INCREMENT BY 1– INCREMENT WITH VALUE 1

MINVALUE 0 — MINIMUM VALUE TO START IS 0

MAXVALUE 5 — MAXIMUM IT CAN GO TO 5

CYCLE — RESET to 0 once reached to MAX VALUE 5

CACHE 2 — INCREMENT 2 VALUES IN MEMORY RATHER THAN INCREMENTING FROM IO

Output of Sequence with CYCLE

SELECT NEXT VALUE FOR TEMPSEQ_CYCLE AS ID, NAME FROM SYS.OBJECTS

Sequence

Alter existing Sequence to set it to CYCLE mode

ALTER SEQUENCE TEMPSEQ CYCLE — RESET to 0 once reached to MAX VALUE 5

Use Sequence in Table as Default constraint.

Scenario: We need to generate token for each customer coming to meet him with HR & finance personal.

  1. Create Sequence

CREATE SEQUENCE TOKENNO AS INT

START WITH 1 — START WITH VALUE 1

INCREMENT BY 1– INCREMENT WITH VALUE 1

MINVALUE 0 — MINIMUM VALUE TO START IS 0

MAXVALUE 5000 — MAXIMUM IT CAN GO TO 5000

NO CYCLE — RESET to 0 once reached to MAX VALUE 5000

CACHE 200 — INCREMENT 200 VALUES IN MEMORY RATHER THAN INCREMENTING FROM IO

  1. Create Table with Sequence

CREATE TABLE HR_EXECUTIVE_MEETING

(TOKENNO INT DEFAULT (NEXT VALUE FOR TOKENNO), DESKNO INT)

 

CREATE TABLE FINANCE_EXECUTIVE_MEETING

(TOKENNO INT DEFAULT (NEXT VALUE FOR TOKENNO), DESKNO INT)

  1. Insert into table having Sequence

INSERT INTO HR_EXECUTIVE_MEETING(TOKENNO,DESKNO) VALUES(DEFAULT,22)

INSERT INTO FINANCE_EXECUTIVE_MEETING(TOKENNO,DESKNO) VALUES(DEFAULT,7)

  1. Check the table values

SELECT * FROM HR_EXECUTIVE_MEETING

SELECT * FROM FINANCE_EXECUTIVE_MEETING

Sequence

Reference: Rohit Garg (http://mssqlfun.com/)

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