Data type specifications can have explicit or implicit default values.
clause in a data type specification explicitly indicates a
default value for a column. Examples:
CREATE TABLE t1 ( i INT DEFAULT -1, c VARCHAR(10) DEFAULT '', price DOUBLE(16,2) DEFAULT '0.00' );
SERIAL DEFAULT VALUE is a special case. In
the definition of an integer column, it is an alias for
NOT NULL AUTO_INCREMENT UNIQUE.
With one exception, the default value specified in a
DEFAULT clause must be a literal constant; it
cannot be a function or an expression. This means, for example,
that you cannot set the default for a date column to be the
value of a function such as
CURRENT_DATE. The exception is
DATETIME columns, you can specify
CURRENT_TIMESTAMP as the default.
See Section 11.2.6, “Automatic Initialization and Updating for TIMESTAMP and DATETIME”.
If a data type specification includes no explicit
DEFAULT value, MySQL determines the default
value as follows:
If the column can take
NULL as a value, the
column is defined with an explicit
If the column cannot take
NULL as a value,
MySQL defines the column with no explicit
DEFAULT clause. Exception: If the column is
defined as part of a
PRIMARY KEY but not
NOT NULL, MySQL creates it as a
NOT NULL column (because
KEY columns must be
For data entry into a
NOT NULL column that
has no explicit
DEFAULT clause, if an
REPLACE statement includes no
value for the column, or an
UPDATE statement sets the column
NULL, MySQL handles the column according
to the SQL mode in effect at the time:
If strict SQL mode is enabled, an error occurs for transactional tables and the statement is rolled back. For nontransactional tables, an error occurs, but if this happens for the second or subsequent row of a multiple-row statement, the preceding rows will have been inserted.
If strict mode is not enabled, MySQL sets the column to the implicit default value for the column data type.
Suppose that a table
t is defined as follows:
CREATE TABLE t (i INT NOT NULL);
In this case,
i has no explicit default, so
in strict mode each of the following statements produce an error
and no row is inserted. When not using strict mode, only the
third statement produces an error; the implicit default is
inserted for the first two statements, but the third fails
DEFAULT(i) cannot produce
INSERT INTO t VALUES(); INSERT INTO t VALUES(DEFAULT); INSERT INTO t VALUES(DEFAULT(i));
For a given table, the
TABLE statement displays which columns have an
Implicit defaults are defined as follows:
For numeric types, the default is
0, with the exception that for integer or floating-point types declared with the
AUTO_INCREMENTattribute, the default is the next value in the sequence.
For date and time types other than
TIMESTAMP, the default is the appropriate “zero” value for the type. This is also true for
explicit_defaults_for_timestampsystem variable is enabled (see Section 5.1.7, “Server System Variables”). Otherwise, for the first
TIMESTAMPcolumn in a table, the default value is the current date and time. See Section 11.2, “Date and Time Data Types”.