What Is Char Data Type in SSIS?


Larry Thompson

The Char data type is a fundamental data type in SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS) that represents a single character. It is commonly used to store fixed-length character data in the form of strings.

Characteristics of Char Data Type

The Char data type has the following characteristics:

  • Fixed Length: The length of a Char column is fixed and pre-defined. It can range from 1 to 8,000 characters.
  • Padding: If the actual value stored in a Char column is less than the defined length, it will be padded with spaces at the end to fill up the remaining space.
  • Faster Comparisons: Since all values in a Char column have the same length, comparisons between Char values are generally faster compared to variable-length string types like VARCHAR.
  • Inefficient Storage: The fixed-length nature of the Char data type can result in inefficient storage if most values do not require the maximum defined length.

Syntax for Defining Char Columns

To define a column with the Char data type, you use the following syntax:

<column_name> CHAR(<length>)

The <column_name> represents the name of your column, and the <length> specifies the maximum number of characters that can be stored. For example, to create a Char column called ProductCode with a length of 10, you would use the following syntax:

ProductCode CHAR(10)

Working with Char Data Type in SSIS

In SSIS, the Char data type is commonly used when working with flat files or when transferring data between different systems. When configuring connections and data transformations in SSIS, you may encounter the Char data type in various scenarios.

Note: When working with Unicode characters, it is recommended to use the NCHAR or NVARCHAR data types instead of Char. The Char data type only supports non-Unicode characters.

Tips for Working with Char Data Type in SSIS

To effectively work with the Char data type in SSIS, consider the following tips:

  • Data Conversion: If you need to convert a Char column to a different data type during your SSIS package execution, use the appropriate transformation component such as the Data Conversion Transformation.
  • Data Truncation:

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