PHP MySQL Limit Data Selections

Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced PHP developer, this comprehensive guide will equip you with the knowledge and skills to master PHP MySQL SELECT LIMIT.

There are many ways to retrieve data from a MySQL database in the PHP programming language in order to display the data on a web page or to use it in other parts of the PHP code.

However, there may be times when you do not wish to retrieve all of the data contained in a table, particularly if the table contains a lot of records. A LIMIT clause can be used to limit a SQL query’s return of records.

In this article, we will dive into the powerful “LIMIT” clause in SQL, and how you can leverage it in PHP with MySQL to efficiently fetch a limited number of rows from a database.

Understanding the LIMIT Clause

The LIMIT clause is used in MySQL to specify the number of rows to be retrieved from the database, as well as the starting point for retrieving those rows.

The syntax for using the LIMIT clause in a SELECT statement is as follows:

SELECT column1, column2, ...
FROM table_name
LIMIT start, count;
startSpecifies the starting point for retrieving rows. The first row has an index of 0, the second row has an index of 1, and so on.
countSpecifies the number of rows to be retrieved from the database.

For example, if you want to retrieve the first 10 rows from a table called “products”, you can use the following query:


SELECT * FROM products LIMIT 0, 10;

This will retrieve the first 10 rows from the “products” table, starting from the first row (index 0) and retrieving 10 rows in total.

Get Limited Data with PHP MySQL SELECT LIMIT

Now that we understand the basics of the LIMIT clause, let’s see how we can get limited data using PHP MySQL SELECT LIMIT.

With the LIMIT clause, you can easily create multi-page results, pagination, or multi-page queries with SQL, which is especially useful when it comes to large tables. There can be a performance impact associated with returning a large number of records.

We can assume that the table “Products” contains records ranging from 1 to 45 (inclusive) and we wish to select all records from that table.

This is how the SQL query would look:

$sql = “SELECT * FROM Products LIMIT 45”;

When the above SQL query is run, it will return the first 45 records that match the query.

Would it be possible to select only records 15 – 30 (inclusive)?

This problem can also be handled by MySQL by using the function OFFSET.

The SQL query below specifies that we are to retrieve only 15 records, starting at record 15 (OFFSET 14):

$sql = “SELECT * FROM Products LIMIT 15 OFFSET 14”;

It is also possible to achieve the same result by using a shorter syntax as follows:

$sql = “SELECT * FROM Products LIMIT 14, 15”;

Using a comma reverses the numbers, as you can see.


In conclusion, the LIMIT clause is a powerful tool in SQL that allows you to fetch a specific subset of rows from a MySQL database efficiently. By implementing LIMIT in PHP MySQL SELECT queries, you can retrieve the desired data in a controlled and optimized manner, making it a valuable technique for pagination, displaying top records, and more. We hope this comprehensive guide has equipped you with the knowledge and skills to effectively use LIMIT in your PHP MySQL SELECT queries, and enhance your database retrieval capabilities. Happy coding!

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