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Oracle® Database Administrator's Guide
11g Release 2 (11.2)

Part Number E17120-05
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Creating Tables

To create a new table in your schema, you must have the CREATE TABLE system privilege. To create a table in another user's schema, you must have the CREATE ANY TABLE system privilege. Additionally, the owner of the table must have a quota for the tablespace that contains the table, or the UNLIMITED TABLESPACE system privilege.

Create tables using the SQL statement CREATE TABLE.

This section contains the following topics:

Example: Creating a Table

When you issue the following statement, you create a table named admin_emp in the hr schema and store it in the admin_tbs tablespace:

CREATE TABLE hr.admin_emp (
         empno      NUMBER(5) PRIMARY KEY,
         ename      VARCHAR2(15) NOT NULL,
         ssn        NUMBER(9) ENCRYPT USING 'AES256',
         job        VARCHAR2(10),
         mgr        NUMBER(5),
         hiredate   DATE DEFAULT (sysdate),
         photo      BLOB,
         sal        NUMBER(7,2),
         hrly_rate  NUMBER(7,2) GENERATED ALWAYS AS (sal/2080),
         comm       NUMBER(7,2),
         deptno     NUMBER(3) NOT NULL
                     CONSTRAINT admin_dept_fkey REFERENCES hr.departments
                     (department_id))
   TABLESPACE admin_tbs
   STORAGE ( INITIAL 50K);

COMMENT ON TABLE hr.admin_emp IS 'Enhanced employee table';

Note the following about this example:

  • Integrity constraints are defined on several columns of the table.

  • The STORAGE clause specifies the size of the first extent. See Oracle Database SQL Language Reference for details on this clause.

  • Encryption is defined on one column (ssn), through the transparent data encryption feature of Oracle Database. The Oracle Wallet must therefore be open for this CREATE TABLE statement to succeed.

  • The photo column is of data type BLOB, which is a member of the set of data types called large objects (LOBs). LOBs are used to store semi-structured data (such as an XML tree) and unstructured data (such as the stream of bits in a color image).

  • One column is defined as a virtual column (hrly_rate). This column computes the employee's hourly rate as the yearly salary divided by 2,080. See Oracle Database SQL Language Reference for a discussion of rules for virtual columns.

  • A COMMENT statement is used to store a comment for the table. You query the *_TAB_COMMENTS data dictionary views to retrieve such comments. See Oracle Database SQL Language Reference for more information.

See Also:

Creating a Temporary Table

Temporary tables are useful in applications where a result set is to be buffered (temporarily persisted), perhaps because it is constructed by running multiple DML operations. For example, consider the following:

A Web-based airlines reservations application allows a customer to create several optional itineraries. Each itinerary is represented by a row in a temporary table. The application updates the rows to reflect changes in the itineraries. When the customer decides which itinerary she wants to use, the application moves the row for that itinerary to a persistent table.

During the session, the itinerary data is private. At the end of the session, the optional itineraries are dropped.

The definition of a temporary table is visible to all sessions, but the data in a temporary table is visible only to the session that inserts the data into the table.

Use the CREATE GLOBAL TEMPORARY TABLE statement to create a temporary table. The ON COMMIT clause indicates if the data in the table is transaction-specific (the default) or session-specific, the implications of which are as follows:

ON COMMIT Setting Implications
DELETE ROWS This creates a temporary table that is transaction specific. A session becomes bound to the temporary table with a transactions first insert into the table. The binding goes away at the end of the transaction. The database truncates the table (delete all rows) after each commit.
PRESERVE ROWS This creates a temporary table that is session specific. A session gets bound to the temporary table with the first insert into the table in the session. This binding goes away at the end of the session or by issuing a TRUNCATE of the table in the session. The database truncates the table when you terminate the session.

This statement creates a temporary table that is transaction specific:

CREATE GLOBAL TEMPORARY TABLE admin_work_area
        (startdate DATE,
         enddate DATE,
         class CHAR(20))
      ON COMMIT DELETE ROWS;

Indexes can be created on temporary tables. They are also temporary and the data in the index has the same session or transaction scope as the data in the underlying table.

By default, rows in a temporary table are stored in the default temporary tablespace of the user who creates it. However, you can assign a temporary table to another tablespace upon creation of the temporary table by using the TABLESPACE clause of CREATE GLOBAL TEMPORARY TABLE. You can use this feature to conserve space used by temporary tables. For example, if you need to perform many small temporary table operations and the default temporary tablespace is configured for sort operations and thus uses a large extent size, these small operations will consume lots of unnecessary disk space. In this case it is better to allocate a second temporary tablespace with a smaller extent size.

The following two statements create a temporary tablespace with a 64 KB extent size, and then a new temporary table in that tablespace.

CREATE TEMPORARY TABLESPACE tbs_t1 
    TEMPFILE 'tbs_t1.f' SIZE 50m REUSE AUTOEXTEND ON
    MAXSIZE UNLIMITED
    EXTENT MANAGEMENT LOCAL UNIFORM SIZE 64K;

CREATE GLOBAL TEMPORARY TABLE admin_work_area
        (startdate DATE,
         enddate DATE,
         class CHAR(20))
      ON COMMIT DELETE ROWS
      TABLESPACE tbs_t1;

Unlike permanent tables, temporary tables and their indexes do not automatically allocate a segment when they are created. Instead, segments are allocated when the first INSERT (or CREATE TABLE AS SELECT) is performed. This means that if a SELECT, UPDATE, or DELETE is performed before the first INSERT, the table appears to be empty.

DDL operations (except TRUNCATE) are allowed on an existing temporary table only if no session is currently bound to that temporary table.

If you rollback a transaction, the data you entered is lost, although the table definition persists.

A transaction-specific temporary table allows only one transaction at a time. If there are several autonomous transactions in a single transaction scope, each autonomous transaction can use the table only as soon as the previous one commits.

Because the data in a temporary table is, by definition, temporary, backup and recovery of temporary table data is not available in the event of a system failure. To prepare for such a failure, you should develop alternative methods for preserving temporary table data.

Parallelizing Table Creation

When you specify the AS SELECT clause to create a table and populate it with data from another table, you can utilize parallel execution. The CREATE TABLE...AS SELECT statement contains two parts: a CREATE part (DDL) and a SELECT part (query). Oracle Database can parallelize both parts of the statement. The CREATE part is parallelized if one of the following is true:

  • A PARALLEL clause is included in the CREATE TABLE...AS SELECT statement

  • An ALTER SESSION FORCE PARALLEL DDL statement is specified

The query part is parallelized if all of the following are true:

  • The query includes a parallel hint specification (PARALLEL or PARALLEL_INDEX) or the CREATE part includes the PARALLEL clause or the schema objects referred to in the query have a PARALLEL declaration associated with them.

  • At least one of the tables specified in the query requires either a full table scan or an index range scan spanning multiple partitions.

If you parallelize the creation of a table, that table then has a parallel declaration (the PARALLEL clause) associated with it. Any subsequent DML or queries on the table, for which parallelization is possible, will attempt to use parallel execution.

The following simple statement parallelizes the creation of a table and stores the result in a compressed format, using table compression:

CREATE TABLE hr.admin_emp_dept
     PARALLEL COMPRESS
     AS SELECT * FROM hr.employees
     WHERE department_id = 10;

In this case, the PARALLEL clause tells the database to select an optimum number of parallel execution servers when creating the table.

See Also: