MySQL 8.0 Reference Manual Including MySQL NDB Cluster 8.0 CHECK Constraints

Prior to MySQL 8.0.16, CREATE TABLE permits only the following limited version of table CHECK constraint syntax, which is parsed and ignored:

CHECK (expr)

As of MySQL 8.0.16, CREATE TABLE permits the core features of table and column CHECK constraints, for all storage engines. CREATE TABLE permits the following CHECK constraint syntax, for both table constraints and column constraints:


The optional symbol specifies a name for the constraint. If omitted, MySQL generates a name from the table name, a literal _chk_, and an ordinal number (1, 2, 3, ...). Constraint names have a maximum length of 64 characters. They are case-sensitive, but not accent-sensitive.

expr specifies the constraint condition as a boolean expression that must evaluate to TRUE or UNKNOWN (for NULL values) for each row of the table. If the condition evaluates to FALSE, it fails and a constraint violation occurs. The effect of a violation depends on the statement being executed, as described later in this section.

The optional enforcement clause indicates whether the constraint is enforced:

A CHECK constraint is specified as either a table constraint or column constraint:

Consider this table definition:

  CHECK (c1 <> c2),
  c1 INT CHECK (c1 > 10),
  c2 INT CONSTRAINT c2_positive CHECK (c2 > 0),
  c3 INT CHECK (c3 < 100),
  CONSTRAINT c1_nonzero CHECK (c1 <> 0),
  CHECK (c1 > c3)

The definition includes table constraints and column constraints, in named and unnamed formats:

As mentioned, MySQL generates a name for any CHECK constraint specified without one. To see the names generated for the preceding table definition, use SHOW CREATE TABLE:

*************************** 1. row ***************************
       Table: t1
Create Table: CREATE TABLE `t1` (
  `c1` int(11) DEFAULT NULL,
  `c2` int(11) DEFAULT NULL,
  `c3` int(11) DEFAULT NULL,
  CONSTRAINT `c1_nonzero` CHECK ((`c1` <> 0)),
  CONSTRAINT `c2_positive` CHECK ((`c2` > 0)),
  CONSTRAINT `t1_chk_1` CHECK ((`c1` <> `c2`)),
  CONSTRAINT `t1_chk_2` CHECK ((`c1` > 10)),
  CONSTRAINT `t1_chk_3` CHECK ((`c3` < 100)),
  CONSTRAINT `t1_chk_4` CHECK ((`c1` > `c3`))
) ENGINE=InnoDB DEFAULT CHARSET=utf8mb4 COLLATE=utf8mb4_0900_ai_ci

The SQL standard specifies that all types of constraints (primary key, unique index, foreign key, check) belong to the same namespace. In MySQL, each constraint type has its own namespace per schema (database). Consequently, CHECK constraint names must be unique per schema; no two tables in the same schema can share a CHECK constraint name. (Exception: A TEMPORARY table hides a non-TEMPORARY table of the same name, so it can have the same CHECK constraint names as well.)

Beginning generated constraint names with the table name helps ensure schema uniqueness because table names also must be unique within the schema.

CHECK condition expressions must adhere to the following rules. An error occurs if an expression contains disallowed constructs.

Foreign key referential actions (ON UPDATE, ON DELETE) are prohibited on columns used in CHECK constraints. Likewise, CHECK constraints are prohibited on columns used in foreign key referential actions.

CHECK constraints are evaluated for INSERT, UPDATE, REPLACE, LOAD DATA, and LOAD XML statements and an error occurs if a constraint evaluates to FALSE. If an error occurs, handling of changes already applied differs for transactional and nontransactional storage engines, and also depends on whether strict SQL mode is in effect, as described in Strict SQL Mode.

CHECK constraints are evaluated for INSERT IGNORE, UPDATE IGNORE, LOAD DATA ... IGNORE, and LOAD XML ... IGNORE statements and a warning occurs if a constraint evaluates to FALSE. The insert or update for any offending row is skipped.

If the constraint expression evaluates to a data type that differs from the declared column type, implicit coercion to the declared type occurs according to the usual MySQL type-conversion rules. See Section 12.3, “Type Conversion in Expression Evaluation”. If type conversion fails or results in a loss of precision, an error occurs.


Constraint expression evaluation uses the SQL mode in effect at evaluation time. If any component of the expression depends on the SQL mode, different results may occur for different uses of the table unless the SQL mode is the same during all uses.