Working on normalization of our existing database - we have too many columns in a table which are empty

Posted on 2011-04-19
Last Modified: 2012-05-11
Working on normalization of our existing database - we have too many columns in a table which are empty?

a) Does this situation harm performance
b)Or just take space
c) What would be the fix? Is it to move such columns to other secondary tables and have 1:1 relation.
Question by:Jsara
    LVL 7

    Accepted Solution

    It really depends on too many things (the data types, the model, etc).

    Empty columns don't necessarily take up space. It depends on the type, and configuration of the Database.

    You should examine your model, not only to better organize your information, but to optimize performance. Big tables (I mean with many columns) is never a good idea. This is why you should normalize.

    LVL 15

    Expert Comment

    by:Walter Ritzel
    Do you know the objective of this table in your model? I mean, from a transactional perspective, a table with too many columns is not a good thing, but for example, if you use this table for reporting purposes or outbound interfaces purposes, it is not bad, because queries against your database will be simplified.
    So, the tip here is: understand your model, then take a decision.
    LVL 7

    Expert Comment

    I Agree with wpcortes. A table with lots of columns, only comes in handy as a calculated table (ie a View). For instance a table you fill up once a day and drop and recreate the following day.


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