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mysql alter table to make a column unique

Posted on 2011-09-14
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Last Modified: 2012-05-12
Hi All,

How do I set a column in MySQL as unique?

There maybe duplicates, so they can be deleted.
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Question by:detox1978
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Ray Paseur earned 2000 total points
ID: 36536673
I have never tried to alter a table and add a UNIQUE index to a column that has duplicates.  That would probably fail (I hope).  I think you might want to create a new table with UNIQUE on the column, then INSERT into the new table with a SELECT from the old table, processing the rows one at a time.

MySQL will throw error number #1062 if you attempt to insert duplicate data into a UNIQUE column.  You can trap this error and ignore it if you want to discard the duplicate values.
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by:detox1978
ID: 36536722
thanks for the info.  created a new table, inserted the data, dropped the original and renamed the new.

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by:Ray Paseur
ID: 36537269
Bingo!  Thanks for the points, ~Ray
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