MS SQL Creating a comma separated string: Free Guide

Comma-separated strings are a powerful tool in the arsenal of any SQL developer. Whether you’re aggregating data, passing parameters to stored procedures, or simply organizing information, mastering the art of working with comma-separated strings can greatly enhance your efficiency and productivity. In this article, we’ll explore the various techniques and best practices for Creating a comma separated string in MS SQL Server.

Example: MS SQL Creating a comma separated string

                SELECT CAST(', ' AS VARCHAR(MAX)) + LTRIM(Field1)
                FROM Table1 AS o
                WHERE o.Field1 = e. Field2
                ORDER BY e. Field2
                FOR XML PATH('')
                ), 1, 1, '') AS Field1
                Table2 ASe 
MS SQL Creating a comma separated string
MS SQL Creating a comma separated string

Best Practices for Working with Comma-Separated Strings

While comma-separated strings can be incredibly useful, it’s important to follow some best practices to ensure optimal performance and maintainability:

  1. Normalize Your Data: Whenever possible, consider normalizing your database schema to avoid the need for comma-separated strings. While there are certainly valid use cases for them, they should be used sparingly.
  2. Avoid Dynamic SQL: While it may be tempting to dynamically generate SQL queries using comma-separated strings, this can open the door to SQL injection vulnerabilities. Whenever possible, use parameterized queries or stored procedures to mitigate this risk.
  3. Document Your Code: If you do use comma-separated strings in your code, be sure to document their purpose and any assumptions or limitations. This will make it easier for future developers to understand and maintain the code.


Comma-separated strings are a versatile tool in the SQL developer’s toolkit, allowing for efficient aggregation and manipulation of data. By understanding the various techniques for creating and working with comma-separated strings in MS SQL Server, you can streamline your development workflow and unlock new possibilities for your applications. So go ahead, harness the power of comma-separated strings, and take your SQL skills to the next level!