Data Definition Language


Data Definition Language, often abbreviated as DDL, is a type of syntax used in SQL (Structured Query Language) that allows users to manage and alter the structure of database objects. It includes commands like CREATE, ALTER, and DROP, which are used to create, modify, or delete database structures but not data. Essentially, DDL defines how data is structured within a database.


The phonetics of “Data Definition Language” is:’Dey-tuh De-fuh-ni-shuhn Lan-gwij

Key Takeaways

  1. Data Definition Language (DDL) is a type of SQL language that is used to define and manage data structures such as databases, schemas, tables, indices, views, etc. It provides commands for defining, altering, and dropping data structures.
  2. The main operations that DDL supports are CREATE, ALTER, and DROP. CREATE is used to create a new database, table, index, or view. ALTER is used to modify an existing database object, such as a table. DROP is used to delete an entire database object.
  3. DDL does not deal with data manipulation; its purpose is to create and manage schemas to ensure that data is stored properly. Therefore, no DDL commands can modify the actual data in the database. They only define how the data should be organized and how the relations among them are processed.


Data Definition Language (DDL) is a crucial technology term due to its vital role in defining and managing data structures in a relational database. DDL provides a set of SQL commands for creating, altering, and deleting database objects such as tables, indices, and schemas. Being a cornerstone of database schema design, it sets the foundation for data storage and retrieval. This language contributes significantly to ensuring consistency, integrity, and accuracy of data through its capabilities. As a result, DDL plays a substantial role in the effective organization, management, and utilization of data, making it indispensable in the field of database management and technology.


Data Definition Language, commonly abbreviated as DDL, is a fundamental aspect of SQL (Structured Query Language) used to manage and modify the structure of a database. It’s an essential tool employed by database administrators for specifying what elements are in the database, the types of data each element contains, and how these elements relate to one another. With DDL, databases can be created, altered, and even deleted, hence making it a vital tool in structuring and managing data efficiently in a database environment.DDL commands such as ‘CREATE,’ ‘ALTER,’ and ‘DROP’ are utilized in manipulating the structure of a database, while not directly engaging with the data itself. For instance, using the DDL ‘CREATE’ command, you can establish a new table or database, while with an ‘ALTER’ command, you can bring changes to the existing structure or objects. Through the ‘DROP’ command, you can delete an entire table or database. Therefore, the purpose of DDL in any database environment can’t be overstated – it lays the framework for how data will be stored, managed, and accessed by defining the database’s structure.


1. SQL (Structured Query Language): SQL is a popular data definition language used in various database management systems (DBMS). It can be used to create, modify, and delete tables and relationships in a database, allowing a user to specify not just what they want done, but how to get it done. For example, the commands “CREATE”, “ALTER”, “DROP” are parts of SQL that help in defining or altering the data structure.2. Oracle DBMS: Oracle uses its own version of Data Definition Language for defining and managing data in its databases. It’s used to create, alter, and delete database objects such as tables, indices, sequences, etc. It also has commands like “CREATE”, “DROP”, and “ALTER”, similar to SQL.3. MySQL: This is another popular open-source relational database management system that employs SQL as its data definition language. In MySQL, you can create, alter, and drop databases and tables, create, alter, and drop indexes, and more. It offers more simplified commands for beginners in its DDL aspect.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

**Q1: What is Data Definition Language (DDL)?**A1: Data Definition Language (DDL) is a type of syntax used to manage the structure of a database. It provides commands for defining, altering, and deleting database objects such as tables, indices, and users.**Q2: What are some examples of DDL commands?**A2: Common DDL commands include CREATE, ALTER, DROP, TRUNCATE, COMMENT, and RENAME. These commands are used to create, modify, or delete data structures in a database.**Q3: How does DDL differ from Data Manipulation Language (DML)?**A3: While DDL is used to define or alter the data structure of the database, DML is used to manipulate the data within the structure. DML commands include SELECT, INSERT, UPDATE, and DELETE.**Q4: Can I undo DDL commands?**A4: Generally, DDL commands cannot be undone once executed because they result in changes to the data structure. However, some database systems may offer transactions that allow DDL commands to be rolled back.**Q5: Is DDL specific to a certain type of database?**A5: No, DDL is not specific to a type of database. It is commonly used in SQL-based relational databases like MySQL, Oracle, and SQL server, but it can be used with other database types as well.**Q6: What does the RENAME command do in DDL?**A6: The RENAME command is used in DDL to change the name of a database object, such as a table or a column. **Q7: Who typically uses DDL commands?**A7: DDL commands are primarily used by database administrators and developers during the setup and design phase of a database. **Q8: Where can I learn more about DDL?**A8: To learn more about DDL, you can refer to the official documentation of your database system. Online coding and database tutorials and courses are also good resources to learn DDL.

Related Finance Terms

  • SQL (Structured Query Language)
  • Data Schemas
  • Database Tables
  • Data Types

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