# Search Results

• ### SQL SERVER – A Funny Cartoon on Index

##### - by pinaldave
Performance Tuning has been my favorite subject and I have done it for many years now. Today I will list one of the most common conversation about Index I have heard in my life. Every single time, I am at consultation for performance tuning I hear following conversation among various team members. I want to ask you, does this kind of conversation happens in your organization? Any way, If you think Index solves all of your performance problem I think it is not true. There are many other reason one has to consider along with Indexes. For example I consider following various topic one need to understand for performance tuning. ?Logical Query Processing ?Efficient Join Techniques ?Query Tuning Considerations ?Avoiding Common Performance Tuning Issues Statistics and Best Practices ?TempDB Tuning ?Hardware Planning ?Understanding Query Processor ?Using SQL Server 2005 and 2008 Updated Feature Sets ?CPU, Memory, I/O Bottleneck Index Tuning (of course) ?Many more… Well, I have written this blog thinking I will keep this blog post a bit easy and not load up. I will in future discuss about other performance tuning concepts. Let me know what do you think about the cartoon I made. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.sqlauthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Humor, SQL Index, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology

• ### SQL SERVER – T-SQL Scripts to Find Maximum between Two Numbers

##### - by pinaldave
There are plenty of the things life one can make it simple. I really believe in the same. I was yesterday traveling for community related activity. On airport while returning I met a SQL Enthusiast. He asked me if there is any simple way to find maximum between two numbers in the SQL Server. I asked him back that what he really mean by Simple Way and requested him to demonstrate his code for finding maximum between two numbers. Here is his code: DECLARE @Value1 DECIMAL(5,2) = 9.22 DECLARE @Value2 DECIMAL(5,2) = 8.34 SELECT (0.5 * ((@Value1 + @Value2) + ABS(@Value1 - @Value2))) AS MaxColumn GO I thought his logic was accurate but the same script can be written another way. I quickly wrote following code for him and which worked just fine for him. Here is my code: DECLARE @Value1 DECIMAL(5,2) = 9.22 DECLARE @Value2 DECIMAL(5,2) = 8.34 SELECT CASE WHEN @Value1 > @Value2 THEN @Value1 ELSE @Value2 END AS MaxColumn GO He agreed that my code is much simpler but as per him there is some problem with my code which apparently he does not remember at this time. There are cases when his code will give accurate values and my code will not. I think his comment has value but both of us for the moment could not come up with any valid reason. Do you think any scenario where his code will work and my suggested code will not work? Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology

• ### SQL SERVER – 2012 – List All The Column With Specific Data Types in Database

##### - by pinaldave
5 years ago I wrote script SQL SERVER – 2005 – List All The Column With Specific Data Types, when I read it again, it is very much relevant and I liked it. This is one of the script which every developer would like to keep it handy. I have upgraded the script bit more. I have included few additional information which I believe I should have added from the beginning. It is difficult to visualize the final script when we are writing it first time. I use every script which I write on this blog, the matter of the fact, I write only those scripts here which I was using at that time. It is quite possible that as time passes by my needs are changing and I change my script. Here is the updated script of this subject. If there are any user data types, it will list the same as well. SELECT s.name AS 'schema', ts.name AS TableName, c.name AS column_name, c.column_id, SCHEMA_NAME(t.schema_id) AS DatatypeSchema, t.name AS Datatypename ,t.is_user_defined, t.is_assembly_type ,c.is_nullable, c.max_length, c.PRECISION, c.scale FROM sys.columns AS c INNER JOIN sys.types AS t ON c.user_type_id=t.user_type_id INNER JOIN sys.tables ts ON ts.OBJECT_ID = c.OBJECT_ID INNER JOIN sys.schemas s ON s.schema_id = t.schema_id ORDER BY s.name, ts.name, c.column_id I would be very interested to see your script which lists all the columns of the database with data types. If I am missing something in my script, I will modify it based on your comment. This way this page will be a good bookmark for the future for all of us. Reference : Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL DMV, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL System Table, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology

• ### SQL SERVER – Pending IO request in SQL Server – DMV

##### - by pinaldave
I received following question: “How do we know how many pending IO requests are there for database files (.mdf, .ldf) individually?” Very interesting question and indeed answer is very interesting as well. Here is the quick script which I use to find the same. It has to be run in the context of the database for which you want to know pending IO statistics. USE DATABASE GO SELECT vfs.database_id, df.name, df.physical_name ,vfs.FILE_ID, ior.io_pending FROM sys.dm_io_pending_io_requests ior INNER JOIN sys.dm_io_virtual_file_stats (DB_ID(), NULL) vfs ON (vfs.file_handle = ior.io_handle) INNER JOIN sys.database_files df ON (df.FILE_ID = vfs.FILE_ID) I keep this script handy as it works like magic every time. If you use any other script please post here and I will post it with due credit. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL DMV, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology

• ### SQL SERVER – Finding Shortest Distance between Two Shapes using Spatial Data Classes – Ramsetu or Adam’s Bridge

##### - by pinaldave
Recently I was reading excellent blog post by Lenni Lobel on Spatial Database. He has written very interesting function ShortestLineTo in Spatial Data Classes. I really loved this new feature of the finding shortest distance between two shapes in SQL Server. Following is the example which is same as Lenni talk on his blog article . DECLARE @Shape1 geometry = 'POLYGON ((-20 -30, -3 -26, 14 -28, 20 -40, -20 -30))' DECLARE @Shape2 geometry = 'POLYGON ((-18 -20, 0 -10, 4 -12, 10 -20, 2 -22, -18 -20))' SELECT @Shape1 UNION ALL SELECT @Shape2 UNION ALL SELECT @Shape1.ShortestLineTo(@Shape2).STBuffer(.25) GO When you run this script SQL Server finds out the shortest distance between two shapes and draws the line. We are using STBuffer so we can see the connecting line clearly. Now let us modify one of the object and then we see how the connecting shortest line works. DECLARE @Shape1 geometry = 'POLYGON ((-20 -30, -3 -30, 14 -28, 20 -40, -20 -30))' DECLARE @Shape2 geometry = 'POLYGON ((-18 -20, 0 -10, 4 -12, 10 -20, 2 -22, -18 -20))' SELECT @Shape1 UNION ALL SELECT @Shape2 UNION ALL SELECT @Shape1.ShortestLineTo(@Shape2).STBuffer(.25) GO Now once again let us modify one of the script and see how the shortest line to works. DECLARE @Shape1 geometry = 'POLYGON ((-20 -30, -3 -30, 14 -28, 20 -40, -20 -30))' DECLARE @Shape2 geometry = 'POLYGON ((-18 -20, 0 -10, 4 -12, 10 -20, 2 -18, -18 -20))' SELECT @Shape1 UNION ALL SELECT @Shape2 UNION ALL SELECT @Shape1.ShortestLineTo(@Shape2).STBuffer(.25) SELECT @Shape1.STDistance(@Shape2) GO You can see as the objects are changing the shortest lines are moving at appropriate place. I think even though this is very small feature this is really cool know. While I was working on this example, I suddenly thought about distance between Sri Lanka and India. The distance is very short infect it is less than 30 km by sea. I decided to map India and Sri Lanka using spatial data classes. To my surprise the plotted shortest line is the same as Adam’s Bridge or Ramsetu. Adam’s Bridge starts as chain of shoals from the Dhanushkodi tip of India’s Pamban Island and ends at Sri Lanka’s Mannar Island. Geological evidence suggests that this bridge is a former land connection between India and Sri Lanka. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.sqlauthority.com) Filed under: PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Function, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology Tagged: Spatial Database, SQL Spatial

• ### SQL SERVER – Create Primary Key with Specific Name when Creating Table

##### - by pinaldave
It is interesting how sometimes the documentation of simple concepts is not available online. I had received email from one of the reader where he has asked how to create Primary key with a specific name when creating the table itself. He said, he knows the method where he can create the table and then apply the primary key with specific name. The attached code was as follows: CREATE TABLE [dbo].[TestTable]( [ID] [int] IDENTITY(1,1) NOT NULL, [FirstName] [varchar](100) NULL) GO ALTER TABLE [dbo].[TestTable] ADD  CONSTRAINT [PK_TestTable] PRIMARY KEY CLUSTERED ([ID] ASC) GO He wanted to know if we can create Primary Key as part of the table name as well, and also give it a name at the same time. Though it would look very normal to all experienced developers, it can be still confusing to many. Here is the quick code that functions as the above code in one single statement. CREATE TABLE [dbo].[TestTable]( [ID] [int] IDENTITY(1,1) NOT NULL, [FirstName] [varchar](100) NULL CONSTRAINT [PK_TestTable] PRIMARY KEY CLUSTERED ([ID] ASC) ) GO Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, Readers Question, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Constraint and Keys, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology

• ### SQL SERVER – Difference Between ROLLBACK IMMEDIATE and WITH NO_WAIT during ALTER DATABASE

##### - by pinaldave
Today, we are going to discuss about something very simple, but quite commonly confused two options of ALTER DATABASE. The first one is ALTER DATABASE …ROLLBACK IMMEDIATE and the second one is WITH NO_WAIT. Many people think they are the same or are not sure of the difference between these two options. Before we continue our explaination, let us go through the explanation given by Book On Line. ROLLBACK AFTER integer [SECONDS] | ROLLBACK IMMEDIATE Specifies whether to roll back after a specified number of seconds or immediately. NO_WAIT Specifies that if the requested database state or option change cannot complete immediately without waiting for transactions to commit or roll back on their own, then the request will fail. If you have understood the difference by now, there is no need to proceed further. If you are still confused, continue with the rest of the post. There is one big difference between ROLLBACK and NO_WAIT. In case incomplete Transaction ALTER DATABASE … ROLLBACK rollbacks those incomplete transaction immediately, where as ALTER DATABASE … NO_WAIT will terminate and rollback the transaction of ALTER DATABASE … NO_WAIT itself. I think it can be clearly explained with the help of the following images. Option 1: ALTER DATABASE … ROLLBACK Connection 1 – Simulating some operation using WAITFOR DELAY WAITFOR DELAY '1:00:00' Connection 2 ALTER DATABASE TestDb SET SINGLE_USER WITH ROLLBACK IMMEDIATE; Option 2: ALTER DATABASE … NO_WAIT Connection 1 – Simulating some operation using WAITFOR DELAY WAITFOR DELAY '1:00:00' Connection 2 ALTER DATABASE TestDb SET SINGLE_USER WITH NO_WAIT; Let me know if this example was simple enough. Reference : Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Documentation, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology

• ### SQL SERVER – Right Aligning Numerics in SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS)

##### - by pinaldave
SQL Server Management Studio is my most favorite tool and the comfort it provides to user is sometime very amazing. Recently I was retrieving numeric data in SSMS and I found it is very difficult to read them as they were all right aligned. Please pay attention to following image, you will notice that it is not easier to read the digits as we are used to read the numbers which are right aligned. I immediately thought before I go for any other tricks I should check the query properties. I right clicked on query properties and I found following option. I checked option Right align numeric values and it just worked fine. Do you have any other similar tricks which do you practice often. I prefer to also include column headers in the result set as it gives me proper perspective of which column I have selected. Sometime little tips like this helps a lot in productivity, I encourage you to share your tips. I will publish it with due credit. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.sqlauthority.com) Filed under: PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Server Management Studio, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology

• ### SQL SERVER – Determine if SSRS 2012 is Installed on your SQL Server

##### - by Pinal Dave
This example is from the Beginning SSRS by Kathi Kellenberger. Supporting files are available with a free download from the www.Joes2Pros.com web site. Determine if SSRS 2012 is Installed on your SQL Server You may already have SSRS, or you may need to install it. Before doing any installation it makes sense to know where you are now. If you happened to install SQL Server with all features, you have the tools you need. There are two tools you need: SQL Server Data Tools and Reporting Services installed in Native Mode. To find out if SQL Server Data Tools (SSDT) is installed, click the Start button, go to All Programs, and expand SQL Server 2012. Look for SQL Server Data Tools   Now, let’s check to see if SQL Server Reporting Services is installed. Click the Start > All Programs > SQL Server 2012 > Configuration Tools > SQL > Server Configuration Manager   Once Configuration Manager is running, select SQL Server Services. Look for SQL Server Reporting Services in the list of services installed. If you have both SQL Server Reporting Services service and SQL Server Developer tools installed, you will not have to install them again. You may have SQL Server installed, but are missing the Data Tools or the SSRS service or both. In tomorrow blog post we will go over how to install based on where you are now.   Tomorrow’s Post Tomorrow’s blog post will show how to install and configure SSRS. If you want to learn SSRS in easy to simple words – I strongly recommend you to get Beginning SSRS book from Joes 2 Pros. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.sqlauthority.com) Filed under: PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL Tagged: Reporting Services, SSRS

• ### SQL SERVER – Function to Round Up Time to Nearest Minutes Interval

##### - by pinaldave
Though I have written more than 2300 blog posts, I always find things which I have not covered earlier in this blog post. Recently I was asked if I have written a function which rounds up or down the time based on the minute interval passed to it. Well, not earlier but it is here today. Here is a very simple example of how one can do the same. ALTER FUNCTION [dbo].[RoundTime] (@Time DATETIME, @RoundToMin INT) RETURNS DATETIME AS BEGIN RETURN ROUND(CAST(CAST(CONVERT(VARCHAR,@Time,121) AS DATETIME) AS FLOAT) * (1440/@RoundToMin),0)/(1440/@RoundToMin) END GO Above function needs two values. 1) The time which needs to be rounded up or down. 2) Time in minutes (the value passed here should be between 0 and 60 – if the value is incorrect the results will be incorrect.) Above function can be enhanced by adding functionalities like a) Validation of the parameters passed b) Accepting values like Quarter Hour, Half Hour etc. Here are few sample examples. SELECT dbo.roundtime1('17:29',30) SELECT dbo.roundtime1(GETDATE(),5) SELECT dbo.roundtime1('2012-11-02 07:27:07.000',15) When you run above code, it will return following results. Well, do you have any other way to achieve the same result? If yes, do share it here and I will be glad to share it on blog with due credit. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.sqlauthority.com) Filed under: PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL DateTime, SQL Function, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology

• ### SQL SERVER – Merge Operations – Insert, Update, Delete in Single Execution

##### - by pinaldave
This blog post is written in response to T-SQL Tuesday hosted by Jorge Segarra (aka SQLChicken). I have been very active using these Merge operations in my development. However, I have found out from my consultancy work and friends that these amazing operations are not utilized by them most of the time. Here is my attempt to bring the necessity of using the Merge Operation to surface one more time. MERGE is a new feature that provides an efficient way to do multiple DML operations. In earlier versions of SQL Server, we had to write separate statements to INSERT, UPDATE, or DELETE data based on certain conditions; however, at present, by using the MERGE statement, we can include the logic of such data changes in one statement that even checks when the data is matched and then just update it, and similarly, when the data is unmatched, it is inserted. One of the most important advantages of MERGE statement is that the entire data are read and processed only once. In earlier versions, three different statements had to be written to process three different activities (INSERT, UPDATE or DELETE); however, by using MERGE statement, all the update activities can be done in one pass of database table. I have written about these Merge Operations earlier in my blog post over here SQL SERVER – 2008 – Introduction to Merge Statement – One Statement for INSERT, UPDATE, DELETE. I was asked by one of the readers that how do we know that this operator was doing everything in single pass and was not calling this Merge Operator multiple times. Let us run the same example which I have used earlier; I am listing the same here again for convenience. --Let’s create Student Details and StudentTotalMarks and inserted some records. USE tempdb GO CREATE TABLE StudentDetails ( StudentID INTEGER PRIMARY KEY, StudentName VARCHAR(15) ) GO INSERT INTO StudentDetails VALUES(1,'SMITH') INSERT INTO StudentDetails VALUES(2,'ALLEN') INSERT INTO StudentDetails VALUES(3,'JONES') INSERT INTO StudentDetails VALUES(4,'MARTIN') INSERT INTO StudentDetails VALUES(5,'JAMES') GO CREATE TABLE StudentTotalMarks ( StudentID INTEGER REFERENCES StudentDetails, StudentMarks INTEGER ) GO INSERT INTO StudentTotalMarks VALUES(1,230) INSERT INTO StudentTotalMarks VALUES(2,255) INSERT INTO StudentTotalMarks VALUES(3,200) GO -- Select from Table SELECT * FROM StudentDetails GO SELECT * FROM StudentTotalMarks GO -- Merge Statement MERGE StudentTotalMarks AS stm USING (SELECT StudentID,StudentName FROM StudentDetails) AS sd ON stm.StudentID = sd.StudentID WHEN MATCHED AND stm.StudentMarks > 250 THEN DELETE WHEN MATCHED THEN UPDATE SET stm.StudentMarks = stm.StudentMarks + 25 WHEN NOT MATCHED THEN INSERT(StudentID,StudentMarks) VALUES(sd.StudentID,25); GO -- Select from Table SELECT * FROM StudentDetails GO SELECT * FROM StudentTotalMarks GO -- Clean up DROP TABLE StudentDetails GO DROP TABLE StudentTotalMarks GO The Merge Join performs very well and the following result is obtained. Let us check the execution plan for the merge operator. You can click on following image to enlarge it. Let us evaluate the execution plan for the Table Merge Operator only. We can clearly see that the Number of Executions property suggests value 1. Which is quite clear that in a single PASS, the Merge Operation completes the operations of Insert, Update and Delete. I strongly suggest you all to use this operation, if possible, in your development. I have seen this operation implemented in many data warehousing applications. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Joins, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology Tagged: Merge

• ### SQL SERVER – Understanding ALTER INDEX ALL REBUILD with Disabled Clustered Index

##### - by pinaldave
This blog is in response to the ongoing communication with the reader who had earlier asked the question of SQL SERVER – Disable Clustered Index and Data Insert. The same reader has asked me the difference between ALTER INDEX ALL REBUILD and ALTER INDEX REBUILD along with disabled clustered index. Instead of writing a big theory, we will go over the demo right away. Here are the steps that we intend to follow. 1) Create Clustered and Nonclustered Index 2) Disable Clustered and Nonclustered Index 3) Enable – a) All Indexes, b) Clustered Index USE tempdb GO -- Drop Table if Exists IF EXISTS (SELECT * FROM sys.objects WHERE OBJECT_ID = OBJECT_ID(N'[dbo].[TableName]') AND type IN (N'U')) DROP TABLE [dbo].[TableName] GO -- Create Table CREATE TABLE [dbo].[TableName]( [ID] [int] NOT NULL, [FirstCol] [varchar](50) NULL ) GO -- Create Clustered Index ALTER TABLE [TableName] ADD CONSTRAINT [PK_TableName] PRIMARY KEY CLUSTERED ([ID] ASC) GO -- Create Nonclustered Index CREATE UNIQUE NONCLUSTERED INDEX [IX_NonClustered_TableName] ON [dbo].[TableName] ([FirstCol] ASC) GO -- Check that all the indexes are enabled SELECT OBJECT_NAME(OBJECT_ID), Name, type_desc, is_disabled FROM sys.indexes WHERE OBJECT_NAME(OBJECT_ID) = 'TableName' GO Now let us disable both the indexes. -- Disable Indexes -- Disable Nonclustered Index ALTER INDEX [IX_NonClustered_TableName] ON [dbo].[TableName] DISABLE GO -- Disable Clustered Index ALTER INDEX [PK_TableName] ON [dbo].[TableName] DISABLE GO -- Check that all the indexes are disabled SELECT OBJECT_NAME(OBJECT_ID), Name, type_desc, is_disabled FROM sys.indexes WHERE OBJECT_NAME(OBJECT_ID) = 'TableName' GO Next, let us rebuild all the indexes and see the output. -- Test 1: ALTER INDEX ALL REBUILD -- Rebuliding should work fine ALTER INDEX ALL ON [dbo].[TableName] REBUILD GO -- Check that all the indexes are enabled SELECT OBJECT_NAME(OBJECT_ID), Name, type_desc, is_disabled FROM sys.indexes WHERE OBJECT_NAME(OBJECT_ID) = 'TableName' GO Now, once again disable indexes for the second test. -- Disable Indexes -- Disable Nonclustered Index ALTER INDEX [IX_NonClustered_TableName] ON [dbo].[TableName] DISABLE GO -- Disable Clustered Index ALTER INDEX [PK_TableName] ON [dbo].[TableName] DISABLE GO -- Check that all the indexes are disabled SELECT OBJECT_NAME(OBJECT_ID), Name, type_desc, is_disabled FROM sys.indexes WHERE OBJECT_NAME(OBJECT_ID) = 'TableName' GO Next, let us build only the clustered index and see the output of all the indexes. -- Test 2: ALTER INDEX REBUILD -- Rebuliding should work fine ALTER INDEX [PK_TableName] ON [dbo].[TableName] REBUILD GO -- Check that only clustered index is enabled SELECT OBJECT_NAME(OBJECT_ID), Name, type_desc, is_disabled FROM sys.indexes WHERE OBJECT_NAME(OBJECT_ID) = 'TableName' GO Let us do final clean up. -- Clean up DROP TABLE [TableName] GO From the example, it is very clear that if you have built only clustered index when the nonclustered index is disabled, it still remains disabled. Do let me know if the idea is clear. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Index, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology

• ### SQL SERVER – Validating Spatial Object as NULL using IsNULL

##### - by pinaldave
Follow up questions are the most fun part of writing a blog post. Earlier I wrote about SQL SERVER – Validating Spatial Object with IsValidDetailed Function and today I received a follow up question on the same subject. The question was mainly about how NULL is handled by spatial functions. Well, NULL is NULL. It is very easy to work with NULL. There are two different ways to validate if the passed in the value is NULL or not. 1) Using IsNULL Function IsNULL function validates if the object is null or not, if object is not null it will return you value 0 and if object is NULL it will return you the value NULL. DECLARE @p GEOMETRY = 'Polygon((2 2, 3 3, 4 4, 5 5, 6 6, 2 2))' SELECT @p.ISNULL ObjIsNull GO DECLARE @p GEOMETRY = NULL SELECT @p.ISNULL ObjIsNull GO 2) Using IsValidDetailed Function IsValidateDetails function validates if the object is valid or not. If the object is valid it will return 24400: Valid but if the object is not valid it will give message with the error number. In case object is NULL it will return the value as NULL. DECLARE @p GEOMETRY = 'Polygon((2 2, 3 3, 4 4, 5 5, 6 6, 2 2))' SELECT @p.IsValidDetailed() IsValid GO DECLARE @p GEOMETRY = NULL SELECT @p.IsValidDetailed() IsValid GO When to use what? Now you can see that there are two different ways to validate the NULL values. I personally have no preference about using one over another. However, there is one clear difference between them. In case of the IsValidDetailed Function the return value is nvarchar(max) and it is not always possible to compare the value with nvarchar(max). Whereas the ISNULL function returns the bit value of 0 when the object is null and it is easy to determine if the object is null or not in the case of ISNULL function. Additionally, ISNULL function does not check if the object is valid or not and will return the value 0 if the object is not NULL. Now you know even though either of the function can be used in place of each other both have very specific use case. Use the one which fits your business case. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.sqlauthority.com) Filed under: PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Function, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology Tagged: Spatial Database, SQL Spatial