The closest I can find to what I want to do is How to duplicate related rows, but my inexperience gets me lost. Basically, I want to copy a number of records, change one column and insert them back into the same table (so its almost a duplicate of the original data).

Table menuship is a hash table for a food menu (each row in the table will identify a menu category (starter, main course, or dessert for example), and products (fish and chips).

Table structure:

CREATE TABLE `menuship3` (
  `headhash` char(40) DEFAULT NULL,
  `menucardhash` char(40) DEFAULT NULL,
  `menucathash` char(40) DEFAULT NULL,
  `producthash` char(40) DEFAULT NULL,
  PRIMARY KEY (`id`),
  KEY `headhash` (`headhash`)

In programming circles, I would say I want to "fork" my data...

If my table content was like so:

id headhash menucardhash menucathash producthash
1 aaa aaa aaa aaa
2 aaa aaa aaa bbb
3 aaa aaa aaa ccc
4 aaa aaa bbb ddd
5 aaa aaa ccc eee
6 aaa other xyz fgi
7 aaa other xyz fgh

I want to duplicate all records with menucardhash aaa (rows 1-5), so I will end up with a table containing 12 records. The extra records will have new menucarhash qqq instead of menucardhash aaa.

id headhash menucardhash menucathash producthash
8 aaa qqq aaa aaa
9 aaa qqq aaa bbb
10 aaa qqq aaa ccc
11 aaa qqq bbb ddd
12 aaa qqq ccc eee

The result in effect means I have records that have similarity, records 1-5 are similar to records 8-12 - the differences being the id and menucardhash columns.

I was just going to select the records within PHP, change menucathash and send them back to the db, but I wondered if there was an SQL query that could do this for me and thus reduce cpu cycle overhead.

Is this possible via one or two queries, or am I better off having PHP carry the weight?


1 Answer 1


This is a very simple INSERT .. SELECT query.

The id is not included in the column list as it has the AUTO_INCREMENT property and will get values automatically. You only need to replace 'aaa' with the menucardhash value that you want to duplicate from and 'qqq' with the new value:

INSERT INTO menuship3
    (headhash, menucardhash, menucathash, producthash)
    headhash, 'qqq', menucathash, producthash
    menucardhash = 'aaa' ;

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