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n. (context computing database English) A text field of indeterminate length in a database, as opposed to the traditional fixed-length field.


A varchar or Variable Character Field is a set of character data of indeterminate length. The term varchar refers to a data type of a field (or column) in a database management system which can hold letters and numbers. Varchar fields can be of any size up to a limit, which varies by databases: an Oracle 9i database has a limit of 4000 bytes, a MySQL database has a limit of 65,535 bytes (for the entire row) and Microsoft SQL Server 2005 has a limit of 8000 characters (unless varchar(max) is used, which has a maximum storage capacity of 2 gigabytes).