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SQL Anywhere 11.0.0 » SQL Anywhere Server - SQL Usage » Designing and Creating Databases » Ensuring data integrity


Using domains

A domain is a user-defined data type that, together with other attributes, can restrict the range of acceptable values or provide defaults. A domain extends one of the built-in data types. The range of permissible values is usually restricted by a check constraint. In addition, a domain can specify a default value and may or may not allow NULLs.

You can define your own domains for a number of reasons.

  • A number of common errors can be prevented if inappropriate values cannot be entered. A constraint placed on a domain ensures that all columns and variables intended to hold values in a range or format can hold only the intended values. For example, a data type can ensure that all credit card numbers typed into the database contain the correct number of digits.
  • Domains can make it much easier to understand applications and the structure of a database.
  • Domains can prove convenient. For example, you may intend that all table identifiers are positive integers that, by default, auto-increment. You could enforce this restriction by entering the appropriate constraints and defaults each time you define a new table, but it is less work to define a new domain, then simply state that the identifier can take only values from the specified domain.

For more information about domains, see SQL data types.

Creating domains (Sybase Central)
Creating domains (SQL)
Dropping domains