How Do I Find the Data Type of a Table in Oracle?


Larry Thompson

When working with Oracle databases, it’s essential to have a good understanding of the data types used in your tables. The data type of a column determines the kind of data that can be stored in that column. In this tutorial, we will explore different methods to find the data type of a table in Oracle.

Method 1: Using the DESCRIBE command

The DESCRIBE command is a handy tool for obtaining information about a table’s structure, including its column names and data types. To use this command, open your SQL client or Oracle SQL Developer and execute the following query:

DESCRIBE table_name;

This will display a list of columns along with their corresponding data types and other attributes such as precision, scale, and nullability.

Method 2: Querying the USER_TAB_COLUMNS view

In addition to the DESCRIBE command, you can also retrieve information about a table’s columns by querying the USER_TAB_COLUMNS view. This view contains metadata about all tables accessible to the current user.

SELECT column_name, data_type
FROM user_tab_columns
WHERE table_name = 'your_table_name';

This query will return a list of column names along with their respective data types.


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In this tutorial, we explored two methods to find the data type of a table in Oracle. The DESCRIBE command provides a quick overview of a table’s structure, including column names and data types. Alternatively, querying the USER_TAB_COLUMNS view allows you to retrieve detailed information about specific columns in a table.

By using these methods, you can easily determine the data types used in your tables, which is crucial for effectively working with Oracle databases.

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