TEXT[(M)] [CHARACTER SET charset_name] [COLLATE collation_name]


A TEXT column with a maximum length of 65,535 (216 - 1) characters. The effective maximum length is less if the value contains multi-byte characters. Each TEXT value is stored using a two-byte length prefix that indicates the number of bytes in the value. If you need a bigger storage, consider using MEDIUMTEXT instead.

An optional length M can be given for this type. If this is done, MariaDB creates the column as the smallest TEXT type large enough to hold values M characters long.

Before MariaDB 10.2, all MariaDB collations were of type PADSPACE, meaning that TEXT (as well as VARCHAR and CHAR values) are compared without regard for trailing spaces. This does not apply to the LIKE pattern-matching operator, which takes into account trailing spaces.

Before MariaDB 10.2.1, BLOB and TEXT columns could not be assigned a DEFAULT value. This restriction was lifted in MariaDB 10.2.1.


Trailing spaces:

CREATE TABLE strtest (d TEXT(10));
INSERT INTO strtest VALUES('Maria   ');

SELECT d='Maria',d='Maria   ' FROM strtest;
| d='Maria' | d='Maria   ' |
|         1 |            1 |

SELECT d LIKE 'Maria',d LIKE 'Maria   ' FROM strtest;
| d LIKE 'Maria' | d LIKE 'Maria   ' |
|              0 |                 1 |


TEXT columns can only be indexed over a specified length. This means that they cannot be used as the primary key of a table norm until MariaDB 10.4, can a unique index be created on them.

MariaDB starting with 10.4

Starting with MariaDB 10.4, a unique index can be created on a TEXT column.

Internally, this uses hash indexing to quickly check the values and if a hash collision is found, the actual stored values are compared in order to retain the uniqueness.

Difference between VARCHAR and TEXT

  • VARCHAR columns can be fully indexed. TEXT columns can only be indexed over a specified length.
  • Using TEXT or BLOB in a SELECT query that uses temporary tables for storing intermediate results will force the temporary table to be disk based (using the Aria storage engine instead of the memory storage engine, which is a bit slower. This is not that bad as the Aria storage engine caches the rows in memory. To get the benefit of this, one should ensure that the aria_pagecache_buffer_size variable is big enough to hold most of the row and index data for temporary tables.

For Storage Engine Developers

  • Internally the full length of the VARCHAR column is allocated inside each TABLE objects record[] structure. As there are three such buffers, each open table will allocate 3 times max-length-to-store-varchar bytes of memory.
  • TEXT and BLOB columns are stored with a pointer (4 or 8 bytes) + a 1-4 bytes length. The TEXT data is only stored once. This means that internally TEXT uses less memory for each open table but instead has the additional overhead that each TEXT object needs to be allocated and freed for each row access (with some caching in between).

See Also


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