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Document ID:760
Subject:Deleting duplicate rows with no primary key
Creation date:7/29/09 12:15 PM
Last modified on:7/29/09 12:15 PM


Consider the following scenario. You have a table with following design

Field Name          Data Type    Primary key   
----------- ---------- ------------

There is no primary on the table and there are duplicates rows in the table. The data looks like:

ID        NAME
------- ---------
1 Joe
2 Mary
1 Joe
Note that the row where NAME is Joe appears twice in the table and you want to delete one of them without affecting the other.

Following queries will delete only one row from the table.

set rowcount 1 -- Cause SQL Server to stop processing after
            -- one row is modified
delete from dbo.TestTable
where FNAME = 'Joe'
set rowcount 0 -- Changes the row count back to default

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