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Status Future consideration
Workspace Informix
Created by Guest
Created on Feb 5, 2021

Support IDataReader::GetBytes / IfxDataReader::GetBytes for BSON fields

We're using the BSON capabilities of the Informix server in order to store data in a separate BSON colum - like additional information for the data row or optional fields that may vary from row to row (e.g. translations to different languages).


With the current Client SDK (v4.50xC5), it is not possible to access the binary representation of that field by issuing a SELECT statement using the Informix.Net.Core driver as the driver currently does not support the GetBytes function for any other field types than BLOBs or BYTEs.

That requires us to either issue multiple bson_value_xxx statements to access all those optional fields -or- to cast the field from BSON to JSON on the server side to then perform the creation of the client-side data object by translating the returned values for a second time.


A more direct approach by returning the byte represenation of the BSON column would have two nice side effects:

a) There's no need for double conversion (either by calling bson_value_xx and then issuing the corresponing GetValue calls from the IDataReader to build up the data object at client side -or- by casting BSON to JSON and then parsing JSON at client side), thus the load on the server is reduced

b) The limit from 32767 characters (currently imposed for a VARCHAR - what the result of the BSON to JSON conversion is) would be omitted

Needed by Date Feb 28, 2021
  • Guest
    Mar 11, 2021

    And just as addition - as BSON/JSON is not officially supported by the driver, some functions may result in nasty behaviour (see TS004878521) by either not returning the correct result or throwing an exception:

    • GetValue returning the BSON binary data as string representation but omitting tailing NULL bytes if there are multiple of them

    • IsDbNull leading to GetBytes not returning any data (but throwing an exception) due to a possible internal buffer issue

    This leads to either the DB server having to perform the BSON to JSON conversion (with all the involved problems like length restrictions to the returned LVARCHAR representation) or to nasty exception handling in order to perform the Binary read (GetBytes + Try-Catch for the "Invalid Cast" in case of a NULL value)...

  • Guest
    Feb 26, 2021

    Despite my last comment, it seems that some of the functions (like the GetBytes one) already support the BSON data type, whereas others (like the IsDbNull function) does not. In general, the .NET Core driver has no official support right now for the BSON datatype - therefore it would be nice if this feature (as BSON itself is supported for many years by Informix) would be implemented into the .NET Core driver as soon as possible.

  • Guest
    Feb 18, 2021

    It seems as if the functionality is undocumented but already implemented in the current 4.50FC5 version of the Informix.Net.Core driver.