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SQL Clone Tables

SQL Clone Tables Overview

There may be a situation when you need an exact copy of a table, and CREATE TABLE … SELECT… doesn’t suit your purposes because the copy must include the same indexes, default values, and so forth.

If you are using MySQL RDBMS, you can handle this situation by following steps.

  • Use SHOW CREATE TABLE command to get a CREATE TABLE statement that specifies the source table’s structure, indexes and all.
  • Modify the statement to change the table name to that of the clone table and execute the statement. This way you will have exact clone table.
  • Optionally, If you need the table contents copied as well, issue an INSERT INTO … SELECT statement, too.

Step by Step Instructions on Cloning Tables in SQL

Try out following example to create a clone table for TUTORIALS_TBL whose structure is as follows:

Step 1:

Get complete structure about table

SQL> SHOW CREATE TABLE TUTORIALS_TBL \G;

*************************** 1. row *************************** Table: TUTORIALS_TBL

Create Table: CREATE TABLE `TUTORIALS_TBL` (

`tutorial_id` int(11) NOT NULL auto_increment,

`tutorial_title` varchar(100) NOT NULL default ”,

`tutorial_author` varchar(40) NOT NULL default ”,

`submission_date` date default NULL, PRIMARY KEY             (`tutorial_id`),

UNIQUE KEY `AUTHOR_INDEX` (`tutorial_author`)

) TYPE=MyISAM

1 row in set (0.00 sec)

Step 2:

Rename this table and create another table

SQL> CREATE TABLE `CLONE_TBL` (

-> `tutorial_id` int(11) NOT NULL auto_increment,

-> `tutorial_title` varchar(100) NOT NULL default ”,

-> `tutorial_author` varchar(40) NOT NULL default ”,

-> `submission_date` date default NULL,

-> PRIMARY KEY  (`tutorial_id`),

-> UNIQUE KEY `AUTHOR_INDEX` (`tutorial_author`)

-> ) TYPE=MyISAM;

Query OK, 0 rows affected (1.80 sec)

Step 3:

After executing step 2 you will a clone table in your database. If you want to copy data from old table then you can do it by using INSERT INTO… SELECT statement.

SQL> INSERT INTO CLONE_TBL (tutorial_id,

->                         tutorial_title,

->                         tutorial_author,

->                         submission_date)

-> SELECT tutorial_id,tutorial_title,

->        tutorial_author,submission_date,

-> FROM TUTORIALS_TBL;

Query OK, 3 rows affected (0.07 sec) Records: 3            Duplicates: 0  Warnings: 0

Finally you will have exact clone table as you wanted to have.

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