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SQL 2005 - Memory Table Column Names

Hello Experts!

So I have a table setup like this:

DECLARE @temp TABLE(....)

How can I get the column names from this table?
SELECT ColumnName
FROM @temp

Thanks,
Mark
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smithmrk
Asked:
smithmrk
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1 Solution
 
Jim HornMicrosoft SQL Server Developer, Architect, and AuthorCommented:
<Potentially stupid answer>  
If the table was created with a CREATE TABLE statement that you can see, wouldn't you already know?
Perhaps some more details on what you're working on would help..
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smithmrkAuthor Commented:
If I do Create Table doesn't that create an actual table in the database?
I don't want to have to do a delete table when I'm done.

For example right now I'm doing
DECLARE @temp TABLE(ID, Name)

SELECT ID,
              Name
FROM @temp

Done...once the stored procedure runs the @temp is gone because it was in memory...if I do CREATE TABLE doesn't that table stay in the database?

Mark
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Jim HornMicrosoft SQL Server Developer, Architect, and AuthorCommented:
Nope.  Temporary tables that are prefixed with @ and # exist in the tempdb database and not the database that your stored procedure runs on.  I don't believe that changes based on Declare @Table TABLE... vs. CREATE TABLE @table.  

Since you're asking it might not be a bad idea to revisit the needs for this table and determine if storing it as a physical table in your database is a better option.
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smithmrkAuthor Commented:
OK, but I found this on Google...to get the column names from Temp Tables, but none of these appear to work for me, was wondering why?

stackoverflow.com/questions/756080/how-to-retrieve-field-names-from-temporary-table-sql-server-2008

Thanks,
Mark
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Jim HornMicrosoft SQL Server Developer, Architect, and AuthorCommented:
Might be a SQL 2005 (your box) vs. SQL 2008 (the SO question) issue.  

Since I don't have a 2005 box in front of me and can't test, I'll back out of this question to encourage another expert to respond.
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smithmrkAuthor Commented:
OK, well thanks for your help to this point...and it may not be possible.

Thanks,
Mark
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Nakul VachhrajaniTechnical Architect, Capgemini IndiaCommented:
Is your temporary table in scope when you run the solution provided in the Stackoverflow link?

You can only get information/meta-data about a temporary table as long as it actually exists. Once out of scope, temporary objects are discarded by SQL Server and hence you will no longer get the column or any other meta-data information.

The other thing I am looking for is - why do you want the meta-data for these temporary tables. If your stored procedure creates them, you already have this in your DDL statements. The other way of putting the question is - what is the scenario under which you create a temporary table, but are unaware of it's data definition?
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Nakul VachhrajaniTechnical Architect, Capgemini IndiaCommented:
Oh, and just an FYI - if you use "@", it's a table variable not a temporary table. Because it is not an object, it doesn't get an object_id and hence you will not get any meta-data information about it.
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PortletPaulCommented:
There IS a difference between  # (an object) and @ (a variable) .
You won't find entries in tempdb.sys.columns for that variable.

If you changed to using a temp table (#) instead, then you would.

no points please
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Daniel JonesData Research AnalystCommented:
To get column names of temp table

SELECT *
FROM   tempdb.sys.columns
WHERE  object_id = Object_id('tempdb..#sometemptable'); 

Open in new window

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smithmrkAuthor Commented:
That appears to be my problem, I'm using the @ and therefore I don't get the table information.  I will try using the # or just creating a table then dropping it when I'm done.

Thanks,
Mark
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