String and binary types
SQL Server supports the following string and binary types.
|binary and varbinary||Binary data types of either fixed length or variable length. Converting data to the binary and varbinary data types is useful if binary data is the easiest way to move around data.|
|char and varchar||Character data types that are either fixed-size, char, or variable-size, varchar.
Starting with SQL Server 2019 (15.x), when a UTF-8 enabled collation is used, these data types store the full range of Unicode character data and use the UTF-8 character encoding.
|nchar and nvarchar||Unicode character data types that are either fixed-size, nchar, or variable-size, nvarchar.
Starting with SQL Server 2012 (11.x), when a Supplementary Character (SC) enabled collation is used, these data types store the full range of Unicode character data and use the UTF-16 character encoding.
|ntext, text, and image||Fixed and variable-length data types for storing large non-Unicode and Unicode character and binary data. Unicode data uses the Unicode UCS-2 character set.
The ntext, text, and image data types will be removed in a future version of SQL Server. Avoid using these data types in new development work, and plan to modify applications that currently use them.