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Tip of the Day
Language: SQL Server
Expertise: Beginner
May 2, 2000

Percent Sign in SQL

Question:
I have a table in which the key field has a value stored with a percent sign, like '1234%'. Using this value, I want to select from another table that can have values like '1234567', '1234678' and '1234098'. How do I go about it?

Answer:
The percent sign (%) is a wildcard in SQL Server. It can be used at the beginning or end of a string. So the following syntax will return all of the records you mentioned:

SELECT * FROM TestTable WHERE Col LIKE '1234%'

Col
-------
1234567
1234678
1234098
If you want to do an exact match for '1234' without the percent sign, then you'll have to trim off the last character, like this:
SELECT * FROM TestTable 
WHERE Col LIKE LEFT('1234%', (LEN('1234%')-1))
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