Sql – How to limit the number of rows returned by an Oracle query after ordering

oraclepaginationsqlsql-limit

Is there a way to make an Oracle query behave like it contains a MySQL limit clause?

In MySQL, I can do this:

select * 
from sometable
order by name
limit 20,10

to get the 21st to the 30th rows (skip the first 20, give the next 10). The rows are selected after the order by, so it really starts on the 20th name alphabetically.

In Oracle, the only thing people mention is the rownum pseudo-column, but it is evaluated before order by, which means this:

select * 
from sometable
where rownum <= 10
order by name

will return a random set of ten rows ordered by name, which is not usually what I want. It also doesn't allow for specifying an offset.

Best Solution

You can use a subquery for this like

select *
from  
( select * 
  from emp 
  order by sal desc ) 
where ROWNUM <= 5;

Have also a look at the topic On ROWNUM and limiting results at Oracle/AskTom for more information.

Update: To limit the result with both lower and upper bounds things get a bit more bloated with

select * from 
( select a.*, ROWNUM rnum from 
  ( <your_query_goes_here, with order by> ) a 
  where ROWNUM <= :MAX_ROW_TO_FETCH )
where rnum  >= :MIN_ROW_TO_FETCH;

(Copied from specified AskTom-article)

Update 2: Starting with Oracle 12c (12.1) there is a syntax available to limit rows or start at offsets.

SELECT * 
FROM   sometable
ORDER BY name
OFFSET 20 ROWS FETCH NEXT 10 ROWS ONLY;

See this answer for more examples. Thanks to Krumia for the hint.