How do you insert a new column at the beginning of a MySQL table?


Previously, I shared some potential performance issues with inserting a column at a specific position in an existing table.

This ordering is done by using the AFTER modifier for the ALTER COLUMN statement. But this raises an interesting question? What if you want to insert a column as the first column? There's nothing to put it "after".

For this use case, you can use the FIRST modifier instead of AFTER:


When might you actually use this? It's handy if you're working with a legacy database schema and normalizing it to Eloquent conventions. Maybe the legacy table had no primary key at all, so you want to add id as the first column.

Here to help,


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