Provided by: postgresql-client-9.1_9.1.3-2_i386 bug


       UPDATE - update rows of a table


       [ WITH [ RECURSIVE ] with_query [, ...] ]
       UPDATE [ ONLY ] table [ [ AS ] alias ]
           SET { column = { expression | DEFAULT } |
                 ( column [, ...] ) = ( { expression | DEFAULT } [, ...] ) } [, ...]
           [ FROM from_list ]
           [ WHERE condition | WHERE CURRENT OF cursor_name ]
           [ RETURNING * | output_expression [ [ AS ] output_name ] [, ...] ]


       UPDATE changes the values of the specified columns in all rows that
       satisfy the condition. Only the columns to be modified need be
       mentioned in the SET clause; columns not explicitly modified retain
       their previous values.

       By default, UPDATE will update rows in the specified table and all its
       subtables. If you wish to only update the specific table mentioned, you
       must use the ONLY clause.

       There are two ways to modify a table using information contained in
       other tables in the database: using sub-selects, or specifying
       additional tables in the FROM clause. Which technique is more
       appropriate depends on the specific circumstances.

       The optional RETURNING clause causes UPDATE to compute and return
       value(s) based on each row actually updated. Any expression using the
       table's columns, and/or columns of other tables mentioned in FROM, can
       be computed. The new (post-update) values of the table's columns are
       used. The syntax of the RETURNING list is identical to that of the
       output list of SELECT.

       You must have the UPDATE privilege on the table, or at least on the
       column(s) that are listed to be updated. You must also have the SELECT
       privilege on any column whose values are read in the expressions or


           The WITH clause allows you to specify one or more subqueries that
           can be referenced by name in the UPDATE query. See Section 7.8,
           “WITH Queries (Common Table Expressions)”, in the documentation and
           SELECT(7) for details.

           The name (optionally schema-qualified) of the table to update.

           A substitute name for the target table. When an alias is provided,
           it completely hides the actual name of the table. For example,
           given UPDATE foo AS f, the remainder of the UPDATE statement must
           refer to this table as f not foo.

           The name of a column in table. The column name can be qualified
           with a subfield name or array subscript, if needed. Do not include
           the table's name in the specification of a target column — for
           example, UPDATE tab SET tab.col = 1 is invalid.

           An expression to assign to the column. The expression can use the
           old values of this and other columns in the table.

           Set the column to its default value (which will be NULL if no
           specific default expression has been assigned to it).

           A list of table expressions, allowing columns from other tables to
           appear in the WHERE condition and the update expressions. This is
           similar to the list of tables that can be specified in the FROM
           Clause of a SELECT statement. Note that the target table must not
           appear in the from_list, unless you intend a self-join (in which
           case it must appear with an alias in the from_list).

           An expression that returns a value of type boolean. Only rows for
           which this expression returns true will be updated.

           The name of the cursor to use in a WHERE CURRENT OF condition. The
           row to be updated is the one most recently fetched from this
           cursor. The cursor must be a non-grouping query on the UPDATE's
           target table. Note that WHERE CURRENT OF cannot be specified
           together with a Boolean condition. See DECLARE(7) for more
           information about using cursors with WHERE CURRENT OF.

           An expression to be computed and returned by the UPDATE command
           after each row is updated. The expression can use any column names
           of the table or table(s) listed in FROM. Write * to return all

           A name to use for a returned column.


       On successful completion, an UPDATE command returns a command tag of
       the form

           UPDATE count

       The count is the number of rows updated. If count is 0, no rows matched
       the condition (this is not considered an error).

       If the UPDATE command contains a RETURNING clause, the result will be
       similar to that of a SELECT statement containing the columns and values
       defined in the RETURNING list, computed over the row(s) updated by the


       When a FROM clause is present, what essentially happens is that the
       target table is joined to the tables mentioned in the from_list, and
       each output row of the join represents an update operation for the
       target table. When using FROM you should ensure that the join produces
       at most one output row for each row to be modified. In other words, a
       target row shouldn't join to more than one row from the other table(s).
       If it does, then only one of the join rows will be used to update the
       target row, but which one will be used is not readily predictable.

       Because of this indeterminacy, referencing other tables only within
       sub-selects is safer, though often harder to read and slower than using
       a join.


       Change the word Drama to Dramatic in the column kind of the table

           UPDATE films SET kind = 'Dramatic' WHERE kind = 'Drama';

       Adjust temperature entries and reset precipitation to its default value
       in one row of the table weather:

           UPDATE weather SET temp_lo = temp_lo+1, temp_hi = temp_lo+15, prcp = DEFAULT
             WHERE city = 'San Francisco' AND date = '2003-07-03';

       Perform the same operation and return the updated entries:

           UPDATE weather SET temp_lo = temp_lo+1, temp_hi = temp_lo+15, prcp = DEFAULT
             WHERE city = 'San Francisco' AND date = '2003-07-03'
             RETURNING temp_lo, temp_hi, prcp;

       Use the alternative column-list syntax to do the same update:

           UPDATE weather SET (temp_lo, temp_hi, prcp) = (temp_lo+1, temp_lo+15, DEFAULT)
             WHERE city = 'San Francisco' AND date = '2003-07-03';

       Increment the sales count of the salesperson who manages the account
       for Acme Corporation, using the FROM clause syntax:

           UPDATE employees SET sales_count = sales_count + 1 FROM accounts
             WHERE = 'Acme Corporation'
             AND = accounts.sales_person;

       Perform the same operation, using a sub-select in the WHERE clause:

           UPDATE employees SET sales_count = sales_count + 1 WHERE id =
             (SELECT sales_person FROM accounts WHERE name = 'Acme Corporation');

       Attempt to insert a new stock item along with the quantity of stock. If
       the item already exists, instead update the stock count of the existing
       item. To do this without failing the entire transaction, use

           -- other operations
           SAVEPOINT sp1;
           INSERT INTO wines VALUES('Chateau Lafite 2003', '24');
           -- Assume the above fails because of a unique key violation,
           -- so now we issue these commands:
           ROLLBACK TO sp1;
           UPDATE wines SET stock = stock + 24 WHERE winename = 'Chateau Lafite 2003';
           -- continue with other operations, and eventually

       Change the kind column of the table films in the row on which the
       cursor c_films is currently positioned:

           UPDATE films SET kind = 'Dramatic' WHERE CURRENT OF c_films;


       This command conforms to the SQL standard, except that the FROM and
       RETURNING clauses are PostgreSQL extensions, as is the ability to use
       WITH with UPDATE.

       According to the standard, the column-list syntax should allow a list
       of columns to be assigned from a single row-valued expression, such as
       a sub-select:

           UPDATE accounts SET (contact_last_name, contact_first_name) =
               (SELECT last_name, first_name FROM salesmen
                WHERE = accounts.sales_id);

       This is not currently implemented — the source must be a list of
       independent expressions.

       Some other database systems offer a FROM option in which the target
       table is supposed to be listed again within FROM. That is not how
       PostgreSQL interprets FROM. Be careful when porting applications that
       use this extension.