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The ENUM Type

"ENUM" is a list of strings used to store a set of predefined discrete values. It can define a type with discrete values, with each enumeration constant representing a specific value.

The "ENUM" data type is suitable for storing data with limited fixed values, such as status and identification.

The advantages of the "ENUM" data type are:

Improved readability of column values. Compact data storage. When storing "ENUM" in MatrixOne, only the numerical index (1, 2, 3, ...) corresponding to the enumeration value is stored.


ENUM ('value1', 'value2', ..., 'valuen')

For example, to define an ENUM column, you can use the following syntax:

CREATE TABLE table_name (
    col ENUM ('value1','value2','value3'),


  • ENUM is a keyword used to declare an enumeration type.
  • value1 to valuen is the optional list of choices for this ENUM type. The value of a column using the ENUM type can only be one of the values listed above.
  • Enumeration values can be of type string, int, or time.

Note: You can have multiple enumeration values in the ENUM data type. However, it is recommended to keep the number of enumeration values below 20.

Example Explanation

The value of an ENUM type must be selected from a predefined list of values. The following example will help you understand:

CREATE TABLE enumtable (
    color ENUM('red', 'green', 'blue'),
    PRIMARY KEY (id)

The above statement will create a table named enumtable, which contains an enum type field named color. The value of the color field must be one of red, green, or blue. At the same time, according to the order of column definition, the indexes of red, green, and blue are 1, 2, and 3, respectively.

Insert ENUM values

When inserting data into a field of an enumeration type, only predefined enumeration values ​​or NULL can be inserted. An error is raised if the inserted value is not in the predefined list. For example:

INSERT INTO enumtable (id, color) VALUES ('01', 'red');
-- 'red' is in the predefined list; the insertion was successful
INSERT INTO enumtable (id, color) VALUES ('02', 'yellow');
-- 'yellow' is not in the predefined list, an error will be generated
INSERT INTO enumtable (id, color) VALUES ('03', NULL);
-- The enumeration member does not define not null; the insertion is successful

In addition to enumeration values, data can be inserted into ENUM columns using numeric indexes on enumeration members. For example:

INSERT INTO enumtable (id, color) VALUES ('04', 2);
-- Since the index of `green` is 2, this data is successfully inserted

If we defined the color column NOT NULL when creating the table:

CREATE TABLE enumtable (
    color ENUM('red', 'green', 'blue') NOT NULL,
    PRIMARY KEY (id)

When inserting a new row without specifying a value for the color column, MatrixOne will use the first enumeration member as the default value:

INSERT INTO enumtable (id) VALUES ('05');
-- Here, the first enumeration member `red` will be assigned as the default value for the column with id 05

Features that are different from MySQL

Unlike MySQL, MatrixOne's ENUM type can only be compared with the string type in the WHERE condition.

You can see this example:

update orders set status= 2 where status='Processing';`

In this example, you must update the status to 2 for the row whose status is Processing. Due to the nature of the ENUM type, MatrixOne implicitly converts 2 to the string 2 in the WHERE condition, which is then compared with Processing.


  1. Modifying ENUM enumeration members requires rebuilding the table using the ALTER TABLE statement.
  2. MatrixOne does not support Filtering ENUM values and Sorting ENUM values.