Using %type-declarations in sql, PL-SQL Programming

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Using %TYPE

The %TYPE attribute gives the datatype of a variable or the database column. In the example below, the %TYPE gives the datatype of a variable:

credit REAL(7,2);
debit credit%TYPE;

The Variables declared using %TYPE is treated such as those declared using a datatype specifier. For example, given the earlier declarations, the PL/SQL treats debit such as REAL (7, 2) variable. The later example shows that a %TYPE declaration can involve an initialization clause:

balance NUMBER(7,2);
minimum_balance balance%TYPE := 10.00;
The %TYPE attribute is mainly useful when declaring a variable which refer to a database columns. You can reference a table & column, or you can reference an owner, column, table, and as in

my_dname scott.dept.dname%TYPE;

Using the %TYPE to declare my_dname has two merits. Firstly, you do not require knowing the exact datatype of dname. Secondly, when the database definition of the dname changes, the datatype of my_dname change accordingly at the run time.


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