A collation is a configuration setting that determines how the database engine should treat character data at the server, database, or column level. … In SQL Server, you can configure a character column with a Unicode data type (nchar, nvarchar, or ntext) or non-Unicode data type (char, varchar, or text).

Collation is a set of rules dictating how each group of characters within SQL Server is treated. A list of collations and their definitions can be found using the following query.

Example:

SQL_Latin1_General_CP1_CI_AS

breaks up into interesting parts:

  1. latin1 makes the server treat strings using charset latin 1, basically ascii
  2. CP1 stands for Code Page 1252
  3. CI case insensitive comparisons so ‘ABC’ would equal ‘abc’
  4. AS accent sensitive, so ‘ü’ does not equal ‘u’

Sources:

Last modified: November 14, 2019

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