Issuing a Query and Processing the Result

Any time you want to issue SQL statements to the database, you require a Statement or PreparedStatement instance. Once you have a Statement or PreparedStatement , you can use issue a query. This will return a ResultSet instance, which contains the entire result (see the section called Getting results based on a cursor here for how to alter this behaviour). Example 5.1, “Processing a Simple Query in JDBC” illustrates this process.

This example will issue a simple query and print out the first column of each row using a Statement .

Statement st = conn.createStatement();
ResultSet rs = st.executeQuery("SELECT * FROM mytable WHERE columnfoo = 500");
while (rs.next()) {
    System.out.print("Column 1 returned ");
    System.out.println(rs.getString(1));
}
rs.close();
st.close();

This example issues the same query as before but uses a PreparedStatement and a bind value in the query.

int foovalue = 500;
PreparedStatement st = conn.prepareStatement("SELECT * FROM mytable WHERE columnfoo = ?");
st.setInt(1, foovalue);
ResultSet rs = st.executeQuery();
while (rs.next()) {
    System.out.print("Column 1 returned ");
    System.out.println(rs.getString(1));
}
rs.close();
st.close();

By default the driver collects all the results for the query at once. This can be inconvenient for large data sets so the JDBC driver provides a means of basing a ResultSet on a database cursor and only fetching a small number of rows.

A small number of rows are cached on the client side of the connection and when exhausted the next block of rows is retrieved by repositioning the cursor.

NOTE

Cursor based ResultSets cannot be used in all situations. There a number of restrictions which will make the driver silently fall back to fetching the whole ResultSet at once.

  • The connection to the server must be using the V3 protocol. This is the default for (and is only supported by) server versions 7.4 and later.

  • The Connection must not be in autocommit mode. The backend closes cursors at the end of transactions, so in autocommit mode the backend will have closed the cursor before anything can be fetched from it.

  • The Statement must be created with a ResultSet type of ResultSet.TYPE_FORWARD_ONLY. This is the default, so no code will need to be rewritten to take advantage of this, but it also means that you cannot scroll backwards or otherwise jump around in the ResultSet.

  • The query given must be a single statement, not multiple statements strung together with semicolons.

Changing code to cursor mode is as simple as setting the fetch size of the Statement to the appropriate size. Setting the fetch size back to 0 will cause all rows to be cached (the default behaviour).

// make sure autocommit is off
conn.setAutoCommit(false);
Statement st = conn.createStatement();

// Turn use of the cursor on.
st.setFetchSize(50);
ResultSet rs = st.executeQuery("SELECT * FROM mytable");
while (rs.next()) {
    System.out.print("a row was returned.");
}
rs.close();

// Turn the cursor off.
st.setFetchSize(0);
rs = st.executeQuery("SELECT * FROM mytable");
while (rs.next()) {
    System.out.print("many rows were returned.");
}
rs.close();

// Close the statement.
st.close();

The following must be considered when using the Statement or PreparedStatement interface:

  • You can use a single Statement instance as many times as you want. You could create one as soon as you open the connection and use it for the connection’s lifetime. But you have to remember that only one ResultSet can exist per Statement or PreparedStatement at a given time.

  • If you need to perform a query while processing a ResultSet, you can simply create and use another Statement .

  • If you are using threads, and several are using the database, you must use a separate Statement for each thread. Refer to Using the Driver in a Multithreaded or a Servlet Environment if you are thinking of using threads, as it covers some important points.

  • When you are done using the Statement or PreparedStatement you should close it.

  • In JDBC, the question mark (?) is the placeholder for the positional parameters of a PreparedStatement. There are, however, a number of PostgreSQL operators that contain a question mark. To keep such question marks in a SQL statement from being interpreted as positional parameters, use two question marks ( ?? ) as escape sequence. You can also use this escape sequence in a Statement , but that is not required. Specifically only in a Statement a single ( ? ) can be used as an operator.

The following must be considered when using the ResultSet interface:

  • Before reading any values, you must call next(). This returns true if there is a result, but more importantly, it prepares the row for processing.

  • You must close a ResultSet by calling close() once you have finished using it.

  • Once you make another query with the Statement used to create a ResultSet, the currently open ResultSet instance is closed automatically.

  • When PreparedStatement API is used, ResultSet switches to binary mode after five query executions (this default is set by the prepareThreshold connection property, see Server Prepared Statements. This may cause unexpected behavior when some methods are called. For example, results on method calls such as getString() on non-string data types, while logically equivalent, may be formatted differently after execution exceeds the set prepareThreshold when conversion to object method switches to one matching the return mode.

To change data (perform an INSERT , UPDATE , or DELETE ) you use the executeUpdate() method. This method is similar to the method executeQuery()

used to issue a SELECT statement, but it doesn’t return a ResultSet instead it returns the number of rows affected by the INSERT , UPDATE , or DELETE statement. Example 5.3, “Deleting Rows in JDBC” illustrates the usage.

This example will issue a simple DELETE statement and print out the number of rows deleted.

int foovalue = 500;
PreparedStatement st = conn.prepareStatement("DELETE FROM mytable WHERE columnfoo = ?");
st.setInt(1, foovalue);
int rowsDeleted = st.executeUpdate();
System.out.println(rowsDeleted + " rows deleted");
st.close();

To create, modify or drop a database object like a table or view you use the execute() method. This method is similar to the method executeQuery() , but it doesn’t return a result.Example 5.4, “Dropping a Table in JDBC illustrates the usage.

This example will drop a table.

Statement st = conn.createStatement();
st.execute("DROP TABLE mytable");
st.close();

The PostgreSQL™ JDBC driver implements native support for the Java 8 Date and Time API(JSR-310) using JDBC 4.2.

PostgreSQL™ Java SE 8
DATE LocalDate
TIME [ WITHOUT TIME ZONE ] LocalTime
TIMESTAMP [ WITHOUT TIME ZONE ] LocalDateTime
TIMESTAMP WITH TIME ZONE OffsetDateTime

This is closely aligned with tables B-4 and B-5 of the JDBC 4.2 specification.

Note

ZonedDateTime , Instant and OffsetTime / TIME WITH TIME ZONE are not supported. Also note that all OffsetDateTime instances will have be in UTC (have offset 0). This is because the backend stores them as UTC.

Example 5.2. Reading Java 8 Date and Time values using JDBC

Statement st = conn.createStatement();
ResultSet rs = st.executeQuery("SELECT * FROM mytable WHERE columnfoo = 500");
while (rs.next()) {
    System.out.print("Column 1 returned ");
    LocalDate localDate = rs.getObject(1, LocalDate.class);
    System.out.println(localDate);
}
rs.close();
st.close();

For other data types simply pass other classes to #getObject .

Note

The Java data types needs to match the SQL data types in table 7.1.

LocalDate localDate = LocalDate.now();
PreparedStatement st = conn.prepareStatement("INSERT INTO mytable (columnfoo) VALUES (?)");
st.setObject(1, localDate);
st.executeUpdate();
st.close();