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33.3. Running SQL Commands

Any SQL command can be run from within an embedded SQL application. Below are some examples of how to do that.

33.3.1. Executing SQL Statements

Creating a table:

EXEC SQL CREATE TABLE foo (number integer, ascii char(16));
EXEC SQL CREATE UNIQUE INDEX num1 ON foo(number);
EXEC SQL COMMIT;

Inserting rows:

EXEC SQL INSERT INTO foo (number, ascii) VALUES (9999, 'doodad');
EXEC SQL COMMIT;

Deleting rows:

EXEC SQL DELETE FROM foo WHERE number = 9999;
EXEC SQL COMMIT;

Updates:

EXEC SQL UPDATE foo
    SET ascii = 'foobar'
    WHERE number = 9999;
EXEC SQL COMMIT;

SELECT statements that return a single result row can also be executed using EXEC SQL directly. To handle result sets with multiple rows, an application has to use a cursor; see Section 33.3.2 below. (As a special case, an application can fetch multiple rows at once into an array host variable; see Section 33.4.4.3.1.)

Single-row select:

EXEC SQL SELECT foo INTO :FooBar FROM table1 WHERE ascii = 'doodad';

Also, a configuration parameter can be retrieved with the SHOW command:

EXEC SQL SHOW search_path INTO :var;

The tokens of the form :something are host variables, that is, they refer to variables in the C program. They are explained in Section 33.4.

33.3.2. Using Cursors

To retrieve a result set holding multiple rows, an application has to declare a cursor and fetch each row from the cursor. The steps to use a cursor are the following: declare a cursor, open it, fetch a row from the cursor, repeat, and finally close it.

Select using cursors:

EXEC SQL DECLARE foo_bar CURSOR FOR
    SELECT number, ascii FROM foo
    ORDER BY ascii;
EXEC SQL OPEN foo_bar;
EXEC SQL FETCH foo_bar INTO :FooBar, DooDad;
...
EXEC SQL CLOSE foo_bar;
EXEC SQL COMMIT;

For more details about declaration of the cursor, see DECLARE, and see FETCH for FETCH command details.

Note: The ECPG DECLARE command does not actually cause a statement to be sent to the PostgreSQL backend. The cursor is opened in the backend (using the backend's DECLARE command) at the point when the OPEN command is executed.

33.3.3. Managing Transactions

In the default mode, statements are committed only when EXEC SQL COMMIT is issued. The embedded SQL interface also supports autocommit of transactions (similar to libpq behavior) via the -t command-line option to ecpg (see ecpg) or via the EXEC SQL SET AUTOCOMMIT TO ON statement. In autocommit mode, each command is automatically committed unless it is inside an explicit transaction block. This mode can be explicitly turned off using EXEC SQL SET AUTOCOMMIT TO OFF.

The following transaction management commands are available:

EXEC SQL COMMIT

Commit an in-progress transaction.

EXEC SQL ROLLBACK

Roll back an in-progress transaction.

EXEC SQL SET AUTOCOMMIT TO ON

Enable autocommit mode.

SET AUTOCOMMIT TO OFF

Disable autocommit mode. This is the default.

33.3.4. Prepared Statements

When the values to be passed to an SQL statement are not known at compile time, or the same statement is going to be used many times, then prepared statements can be useful.

The statement is prepared using the command PREPARE. For the values that are not known yet, use the placeholder "?":

EXEC SQL PREPARE stmt1 FROM "SELECT oid, datname FROM pg_database WHERE oid = ?";

If a statement returns a single row, the application can call EXECUTE after PREPARE to execute the statement, supplying the actual values for the placeholders with a USING clause:

EXEC SQL EXECUTE stmt1 INTO :dboid, :dbname USING 1;

If a statement returns multiple rows, the application can use a cursor declared based on the prepared statement. To bind input parameters, the cursor must be opened with a USING clause:

EXEC SQL PREPARE stmt1 FROM "SELECT oid,datname FROM pg_database WHERE oid > ?";
EXEC SQL DECLARE foo_bar CURSOR FOR stmt1;

/* when end of result set reached, break out of while loop */
EXEC SQL WHENEVER NOT FOUND DO BREAK;

EXEC SQL OPEN foo_bar USING 100;
...
while (1)
{
    EXEC SQL FETCH NEXT FROM foo_bar INTO :dboid, :dbname;
    ...
}
EXEC SQL CLOSE foo_bar;

When you don't need the prepared statement anymore, you should deallocate it:

EXEC SQL DEALLOCATE PREPARE name;

For more details about PREPARE, see PREPARE. Also see Section 33.5 for more details about using placeholders and input parameters.

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