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From:Jigal van Hemert Date:April 26 2005 2:01pm
Subject:Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??
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From: "Martijn Tonies"

> Ehm... it might be me - but what sense does it make to have a NULL
> in a PK?
> If you "need" this, then your primary key probably isn't a primary key.
>
> Care to explain why and how you're designing your database?

Martijn,

The table contains an variable number of integer parameters for accounts:

id INT(11) - accountID
name VARCHAR(32) - parameter name
value INT(11) - parameter value

Other tables contain string, datetime, etc. parameters.

Since most searches are made for a value (or range) of one or more
parameters, a usable primary key is:
name-value-id (on might argue that a part of the name would be sufficient,
but that is not the issue here).
Indeed almost all queries are very fast.

A NULL value indicates that it is a mandatory field that was not filled with
(a valid) value or that the value was reset, or...

Deleting the record is also not very nice, since it will prevent the use of
(inner) joins.

I have to think back why we dropped the left joins and started using NULL
values, but the first thing that came to mind was an increase in speed.

An extra challenge: the queries are generated because of the large number of
different queries that might be used. We can switch between left joins and
inner joins quickly though.

Regards, Jigal.

Thread
why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Jigal van Hemert26 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Martijn Tonies26 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Jochem van Dieten26 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Jigal van Hemert26 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Harald Fuchs26 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Jigal van Hemert26 Apr
    • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??SGreen26 Apr
      • Att. Shawn GreenJigal van Hemert2 May
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Dawid Kuroczko26 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Jigal van Hemert26 Apr
    • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Jochem van Dieten26 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Jigal van Hemert26 Apr
    • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Paul DuBois26 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Martijn Tonies26 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Mikhail Entaltsev26 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Jigal van Hemert26 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Harald Fuchs26 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Martijn Tonies26 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Jigal van Hemert27 Apr
    • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Peter Brawley27 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Jigal van Hemert27 Apr
    • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Frank Bax27 Apr
    • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Peter Brawley27 Apr
    • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Joerg Bruehe27 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Jigal van Hemert28 Apr
RE: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Jay Blanchard26 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Jigal van Hemert26 Apr
    • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Paul DuBois26 Apr
  • RE: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Frank Bax26 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Jigal van Hemert26 Apr
    • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Paul DuBois26 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Martijn Tonies26 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Jigal van Hemert26 Apr
    • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Paul DuBois26 Apr
    • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Peter Brawley26 Apr
RE: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??emierzwa26 Apr
  • RE: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??SGreen26 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Martijn Tonies26 Apr
RE: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Jay Blanchard26 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Dawid Kuroczko27 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Martijn Tonies27 Apr
RE: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??emierzwa26 Apr
Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??beacker30 Apr
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Jigal van Hemert1 May
  • Re: why NOT NULL in PRIMARY key??Martijn Tonies1 May