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SQL Anywhere 11.0.1 » SQL Anywhere Server - Database Administration » Configuring Your Database » International languages and character sets » Understanding character sets » Character set conversion


SQL statements and character sets

SQL Anywhere Server character set conversion causes all SQL statements to be converted to the database character set prior to parsing and execution. A side-effect of this conversion is that any characters in the SQL statement that cannot be converted to the database character set are converted to a substitution character. A SQL statement with an arbitrary Unicode character can be executed in one of the following ways:

  • Use the UNISTR function to specify the Unicode character values

  • Use a host variable to specify the Unicode character values

  • Use UTF-8 as the database character set

If you select UTF8BIN as the char collation the database character set is UTF-8. If you specify UTF-8 encoding the char collation is UCA.

The Unicode Collation Algorithm (UCA) provides advanced comparison, ordering, and case conversion, but it can affect performance. Although UTF8BIN is space-efficient and fast, the sort order and comparison is binary. Specify the char collation as UTF8BIN if you require Unicode characters in your SQL statements, but do not need the full power of UCA for sorting and comparison. Use UCA only when necessary, by using the SORTKEY and COMPARE functions.

See also