Variable-length character data types are 255 bytes long in SQL Server 6.5. SQL Server 7.0 extends Varchar to 8000 bytes long. Until SQL Server 6.5, text data type was used for anything that required more than 255 characters. However, the text data type is sometimes problematic, a little slow, and not always appropriate for what is required. One of the advantages of extended varchar type is that it’s now easier to quickly offer decent floating help, because you have more than 255 characters available.