SQL Query to get orphaned nodes

Hi all,
I have an interesting query that I am trying to create...

I have a table that contains entities, each of these *may* have a parent (only single level)

What I would like to do is query the table to find entries that say they have a parent, but the parent entry does not exist.

tblData
ID, DESCRIPTION, PARENT
'A','Main Parent','-'
'B','First Child','A'
'C','Second Child','A'
'D','Another Parent','-'
'E','An Orphan','Z'

In this example, I would like to execute a query to get the record relating to 'E'

I've tried a few ways, but can't get it to work!!!

Any ideas would be very much appreciated..

Thanks a lot,

James
LVL 4
James AtkinSenior Principle Software EngineerAsked:
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Snarf0001Commented:
select a.*
from tblData a
left join tblData b on a.Parent = b.ID
where a.Parent != '-' and b.ID is null

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Phillip BurtonDirector, Practice Manager and Computing ConsultantCommented:
Try this:

Select T.ID
from tblData T
LEFT JOIN tblData U
on T.[Parent] = U.ID
where U.ID is null

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ste5anSenior DeveloperCommented:
You should use a foreign key constraint to avoid this situation.

SELECT  C.*
FROM    #tblData C
        LEFT JOIN #tblData P ON C.PARENT = P.ID
WHERE   P.ID IS NULL;

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James AtkinSenior Principle Software EngineerAuthor Commented:
Perfect!!! Thanks :-)
Hope it is okay to split points equally as there was only 1 minute between posts!
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Microsoft SQL Server

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