White Paper: Reducing Database Size by Using Vardecimal Storage Format

Hermann Daeubler and Sunil Agarwal have co-authored this white paper. Hermann is a Program Manager with the SQL team and is a SAP expert. Hermann was involved with vardecimal storage format team from the very beginning to guide us with the customer scenarios and the performance implications/trade-offs.  This paper provides a general overview of vardecimal storage format usage scenarios, restrictions, database migration to SQL Server 2005/SP2 in the… Read more

Boundary conditions for enabling vardecimal storage format

Have you ever tried updating a variable length column and fail? Well, it can happen if the modified row cannot fit on the page. One simple example of this as follows   create table boundary (c1 char(8000), c2 char(20), c3 varchar(23), c4 decimal(38,2)) go   When you create this table, it gives you the following… Read more

Vardecimal Storage Format and its implications on Backup/Recovery

Has any one tried restoring or attaching a SQL Server 2005 database on SQL Server 2000? You will find that SQL Server 2000 will fail this restore or attach. The reason is simple. SQL Server 2000 does not understand the physical structure changes in SQL Server 2005 database. SQL Server detects this incompatibility using the… Read more

Enabling vardecimal storage format

First, this feature is only available in EE and Dev SKU.   Enabling vardecimal storage format on a table is a two step process as follows:   First you need to enable database for Vardecimal storage format. This can be done using the stored procedure sp_db_vardecimal_storage_format. The exact command is as follows   exec sp_db_vardecimal_storage_format ‘<dbname>’,… Read more

Estimating the space savings with vardecimal storage format

Before enabling Vardecimal storage format, you may want to know the potential reduction in the size of the table. Clearly, if the table has no decimal/numeric columns, there will be no savings. Note, that even if you have a table with decimal/numeric column types, there is no guarantee that you will be able to reduce… Read more

Reducing the Size of your Database in SQL Server 2005/SP2

An exciting new feature in SQL Server 2005/SP2 is Vardecimal Storage Format. This storage format lets you reduce the size of your table significantly if the table has one of more columns of type decimal or numeric without requiring any changes to your application.   Up until now, the decimal and numeric types are stored… Read more