Understanding TOP WITH TIES in SQL

Understanding TOP WITH TIES in SQL

The WITH TIES clause can only be used only with TOP and ORDER BY. Both TOP and ORDER BY are required.

Now what does the WITH TIES clause actually do?

Suppose you have 200 rows in a table and out of that 100 rows have exactly the same value in the column specified in the ORDER BY clause. Normally when you use TOP (n) rows, it will return only those (n) rows you specified, but if you use TOP (n) WITH TIES, it will return you all the rows that have same value as that of the last record of top (n) which can be much more.

Suppose further that you have 50 rows in a table. Out of those 50 records you have the exact same value in the column that is ordered by in 30 of them. When using TOP 10 WITH TIES (for example) it will return all the rows that contains the same value as that of the last record of the TOP 10 for which you asked. So, if Record 10 equals the other 29 columns, the query will not return 10 records, but 30 instead. If record 10 doesn’t match any of the duplicates, it will return only 10 records


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