Is a dynamic sql stored procedure a bad thing for lots of records?

I have a table with almost 800,000 records and I am currently using dynamic sql to generate the query on the back end. The front end is a search page which takes about 20 parameters and depending on if a parameter was chosen, it adds an " AND ..." to the base query. I'm curious as to if dynamic sql is the right way to go ( doesn't seem like it because it runs slow). I am contemplating on just creating a denormalized table with all my data. Is this a good idea or should I just build the query all together instead of building it piece by piece using the dynamic sql. Last thing, is there a way to speed up dynamic sql?


It is more likely that your indexing (or lack thereof) is causing the slowness than the dynamic SQL.

What does the execution plan look like? Is the same query slow when executed in SSMS? What about when it's in a stored procedure?

If your table is an unindexed heap, it will perform poorly as the number of records grows - this is regardless of the query, and a dynamic query can actually perform better as the table nature changes because a dynamic query is more likely to have its query plan re-evaluated when it's not in the cache. This is not normally an issue (and I would not classify it as a design advantage of dynamic queries) except in the early stages of a system when SPs have not been recompiled, but statistics and query plans are out of date, but the volume of data has just drastically changed.

Not the static one yet. I have with the dynamic query, but it does not give any optimizations. If I ran it with the static query and it gave suggestions, would applying them affect the dynamic query? – Xaisoft (41 mins ago)

Yes, the dynamic query (EXEC (@sql)) is probably not going to be analyzed unless you analyzed a workload file. – Cade Roux (33 mins ago)

When you have a search query across multiple tables that are joined, the columns with indexes need to be the search columns as well as the primary key/foreign key columns - but it depends on the cardinality of the various tables. The tuning analyzer should show this. – Cade Roux (22 mins ago)

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