A transaction is a single unit of work. If a transaction is successful, all of the data modifications made during the transaction are committed and become a permanent part of the database. If a transaction encounters errors and must be canceled or rolled back, then all of the data modifications are erased.
SQL Server operates in the following transaction modes.
Each individual statement is a transaction.
Each transaction is explicitly started with the BEGIN TRANSACTION statement and explicitly ended with a COMMIT or ROLLBACK statement.
A new transaction is implicitly started when the prior transaction completes, but each transaction is explicitly completed with a COMMIT or ROLLBACK statement.
Applicable only to multiple active result sets (MARS), a Transact-SQL explicit or implicit transaction that starts under a MARS session becomes a batch-scoped transaction. A batch-scoped transaction that is not committed or rolled back when a batch completes is automatically rolled back by SQL Server.
For more information, see Transactions (Database Engine).