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The non-Unicode data types are char, varchar, varchar(max), and text.
These data types use the character representation schema in single-byte or double-byte code pages.
(Arabic code page 1256 uses single-byte representation.) To use non-Unicode data types, the system collation must be Arabic; otherwise, the data will be corrupted and replaced with question marks (??? The Unicode data types are nchar, nvarchar, nvarchar(max), and ntext.
These data types use Unicode character representation. Using Unicode data types gives you the ability to use Arabic data even if the system collation is not Arabic (such as during SQL Server installation).
For more information about Unicode visit the Unicode Web site (
For more information about International Features in Microsoft SQL Server 2005, see International Features in Microsoft SQL Server 2005 on the Microsoft Developer Network (MSDN).
Microsoft SQL Server 2005 supports Arabic data in Unicode and non-Unicode formats.
Get information about the Arabic language code page, collations, components, and functions, as well as feature-specific information concerning set up, administration, replication, data transformation, and more.
UCS‑2 is frequently confused with UTF‑16, which is used to internally represent text in the Microsoft Windows, Windows 2000, Windows XP, and Windows CE), but UCS-2 is more limited.
Unicode is a standard that was created by the Unicode Consortium, an organization that promotes a single character set for all languages.
SQL Server 2005 supports the Unicode Standard, Version 3.2.
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2003 operating system, including the Arabic language.