At the end of all this I think I am more confused then when I started..
Should I use
Insert ignore statement.
or should I use
UPDATE maintable SET isCurrentlyActive = 0;
INSERT INTO maintable (primaryKeyField, field1, field2, field3, isCurrentlyActive )
SELECT primaryKeyField, field1, field2, field3, 1 FROM stagingtable
ON DUPLICATE KEY UPDATE isCurrentlyActive = 1;
TRUNCATE TABLE stagingTable;
I am lost....I would kill to know this much about this area.