What Is Smallint Data Type?


Scott Campbell

What Is Smallint Data Type?

When working with databases, it is essential to understand the different data types available for storing and manipulating data. One such data type is the smallint data type.


The smallint data type is a numeric data type commonly used in relational databases. It is designed to store whole numbers within a specific range.


The range of values that can be stored in a smallint column varies depending on the database management system (DBMS) being used. In most DBMSs, a smallint typically occupies 2 bytes of storage and can store values from -32,768 to 32,767.


The smallint data type is often used when there is a need to conserve storage space or when the range of possible values falls within the given range. For example, it can be used to represent the number of units in stock for an inventory management system or the number of employees in a company.


In SQL, when creating a table, you can define a column as smallint. Here’s an example:

CREATE TABLE my_table (
    id INT,
    quantity SMALLINT

Example Usage in Queries

You can use the smallint data type in various SQL queries for filtering and sorting purposes. Here are some examples:

  • Select all records where the quantity is greater than 100:

SELECT * FROM my_table WHERE quantity > 100;
  • Sort records based on the quantity in ascending order:

SELECT * FROM my_table ORDER BY quantity ASC;


The smallint data type is a useful tool for storing whole numbers within a specific range. It provides an efficient way to store and manipulate data when the range of values falls within its limits. By understanding the capabilities and usage of the smallint data type, you can make informed decisions when designing and working with databases.

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