How to Remove Quotes of QUOTENAME? – Interview Question of the Week #235

Question: How to Remove Quotes of QUOTENAME?

Answer: This was a very interesting question, I received based on my yesterday’s blog post SQL SERVER – QUOTENAME Function and Custom Quote Character. One of the users followed the direction of the blog post and updated the database columns without thinking about the impact of the column. He ended up every single value of his database with the additional quotes around it.

For example, the columns in the database looked like as follows:

Now his question was that how can he undo the update which he had done. One method was to use the function LEFT or RIGHT and remove the first and last character and update the column back. However, before he executes that he wanted to know if there is any way he can undo his changes.

There is an interesting function – PARSENAME, you can use that to reverse the impact of the QUOTENAME function if you have used it to apply [ or ] to your string.

I asked him to update his table with the column PARSENAME(StringName, 1)  and he was able to get his original values back as displayed in the image.

Particularly PARSENAME function can be used for many other usages. I will write a separate blog post to demonstrate how passing different parameters in the second value we can get different values and how we can use it creatively in our application.

Here are a few previous blog posts related to interview questions and answers.

Reference: Pinal Dave (

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