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DBI::FAQ(3)	      User Contributed Perl Documentation	   DBI::FAQ(3)

       DBI::FAQ -- The Frequently Asked Questions for the Perl5 Database

	   perldoc DBI::FAQ

       This document is currently at version 0.38, as of February 8th, 2000.

       This document serves to answer the most frequently asked questions on
       both the DBI Mailing Lists and personally to members of the DBI devel‐
       opment team.

Basic Information & Information Sources
       1.1 What is DBI, DBperl, Oraperl and *perl?

       To quote Tim Bunce, the architect and author of DBI:

	   ``DBI is a database access Application Programming Interface (API)
	     for the Perl Language. The DBI API Specification defines a set
	     of functions, variables and conventions that provide a consistent
	     database interface independant of the actual database being used.''

       In simple language, the DBI interface allows users to access multiple
       database types transparently. So, if you connecting to an Oracle,
       Informix, mSQL, Sybase or whatever database, you don't need to know the
       underlying mechanics of the 3GL layer. The API defined by DBI will work
       on all these database types.

       A similar benefit is gained by the ability to connect to two different
       databases of different vendor within the one perl script, ie, I want to
       read data from an Oracle database and insert it back into an Informix
       database all within one program. The DBI layer allows you to do this
       simply and powerfully.

       DBperl is the old name for the interface specification. It's usually
       now used to denote perl4 modules on database interfacing, such as,
       oraperl, isqlperl, ingperl and so on. These interfaces didn't have a
       standard API and are generally not supported.

       Here's a list of DBperl modules, their corresponding DBI counterparts
       and support information. Please note, the author's listed here gener‐
       ally do not maintain the DBI module for the same database. These email
       addresses are unverified and should only be used for queries concerning
       the perl4 modules listed below. DBI driver queries should be directed
       to the dbi-users mailing list.

	   Module Name Database Required   Author	   DBI
	   ----------- -----------------   ------	   ---
	   Sybperl     Sybase		   Michael Peppler DBD::Sybase
	   Oraperl     Oracle 6 & 7	   Kevin Stock	   DBD::Oracle
	   Ingperl     Ingres		   Tim Bunce &	   DBD::Ingres
					   Ted Lemon
	   Interperl   Interbase	   Buzz Moschetti  DBD::Interbase
	   Uniperl     Unify 5.0	   Rick Wargo	   None
	   Pgperl      Postgres		   Igor Metz	   DBD::Pg
	   Btreeperl   NDBM		   John Conover	   SDBM?
	   Ctreeperl   C-Tree		   John Conover	   None
	   Cisamperl   Informix C-ISAM	   Mathias Koerber None
	   Duaperl     X.500 Directory	   Eric Douglas	   None
		       User Agent

       However, some DBI modules have DBperl emulation layers, so, DBD::Oracle
       comes with an Oraperl emulation layer, which allows you to run legacy
       oraperl scripts without modification. The emulation layer translates
       the oraperl API calls into DBI calls and executes them through the DBI

       Here's a table of emulation layer information:

	   Module		   Emulation Layer     Status
	   ------	   ---------------     ------
	   DBD::Oracle	   Oraperl	       Complete
	   DBD::Informix   Isqlperl	       Under development
	   DBD::Ingres	   Ingperl	       Complete?
	   DBD::Sybase	   Sybperl	       Working? ( Needs verification )
	   DBD::mSQL	   Msqlperl	       Experimentally released with

       The Msqlperl emulation is a special case. Msqlperl is a perl5 driver
       for mSQL databases, but does not conform to the DBI Specification. It's
       use is being deprecated in favour of DBD::mSQL. Msqlperl may be down‐
       loaded from CPAN via:


       1.2. Where can I get it from?

       The Comprehensive Perl Archive Network resources should be used for
       retrieving up-to-date versions of the DBI and drivers. CPAN may be
       accessed via Tom Christiansen's splendid CPAN multiplexer program
       located at:


       For more specific version information and exact URLs of drivers, please
       see the DBI drivers list and the DBI module pages which can be found


       This list is automatically generated on a nightly basis from CPAN and
       should be up-to-date.

       1.3. Where can I get more information?

       There are a few information sources on DBI.

       "Programming the Perl DBI"
	   "Programming the Perl DBI" is the official book on the DBI written
	   by Alligator Descartes and Tim Bunce and published by O'Reilly &
	   Associates.	The book was released on February 9th, 2000.

	   The table of contents is:

	       1. Introduction
		   From Mainframes to Workstations
		   DBI in the Real World
		   A Historical Interlude and Standing Stones
	       2. Basic Non-DBI Databases
		   Storage Managers and Layers
		   Query Languages and Data Functions
		   Standing Stones and the Sample Database
		   Flat-File Databases
		   Putting Complex Data into Flat Files
		   Concurrent Database Access and Locking
		   DBM Files and the Berkeley Database Manager
		   The MLDBM Module
	       3. SQL and Relational Databases
		   The Relational Database Methodology
		   Datatypes and NULL Values
		   Querying Data
		   Modifying Data Within Tables
		   Creating and Destroying Tables
	       4. Programming with the DBI
		   DBI Architecture
		   Data Source Names
		   Connection and Disconnection
		   Error Handling
		   Utility Methods and Functions
	       5. Interacting with the Database
		   Issuing Simple Queries
		   Executing Non-SELECT Statements
		   Binding Parameters to Statements
		   Binding Output Columns
		   do() Versus prepare()
		   Atomic and Batch Fetching
	       6. Advanced DBI
		   Handle Attributes and Metadata
		   Handling LONG/LOB Data
		   Transactions, Locking, and Isolation
	       7. ODBC and the DBI
		   ODBC -- Embraced and Extended
		   DBI -- Thrashed and Mutated
		   The Nuts and Bolts of ODBC
		   ODBC from Perl
		   The Marriage of DBI and ODBC
		   Questions and Choices
		   Moving Between Win32::ODBC and the DBI
		   And What About ADO?
	       8. DBI Shell and Database Proxying
		   dbish -- The DBI Shell
		   Database Proxying
	       A. DBI Specification
	       B. Driver and Database Characteristics
	       C. ASLaN Sacred Site Charter

	   The book should be available from all good bookshops and can be
	   ordered online either <I>via</I> O'Reilly & Associates


	   or Amazon


       POD documentation
	   PODs are chunks of documentation usually embedded within perl pro‐
	   grams that document the code ``in place'', providing a useful
	   resource for programmers and users of modules. POD for DBI and
	   drivers is beginning to become more commonplace, and documentation
	   for these modules can be read with the "perldoc" program included
	   with Perl.

	   The DBI Specification
	       The POD for the DBI Specification can be read with the:

		   perldoc DBI

	       command. The Specification also forms Appendix A of "Program‐
	       ming the Perl DBI".

	       Users of the Oraperl emulation layer bundled with DBD::Oracle,
	       may read up on how to program with the Oraperl interface by

		   perldoc Oraperl

	       This will produce an updated copy of the original oraperl man
	       page written by Kevin Stock for perl4. The oraperl API is fully
	       listed and described there.

	       Users of the DBD modules may read about some of the private
	       functions and quirks of that driver by typing:

		   perldoc <driver>

	       For example, the DBD::mSQL driver is bundled with driver-spe‐
	       cific documentation that can be accessed by typing

		   perldoc DBD::mSQL

	   Frequently Asked Questions
	       This document, the Frequently Asked Questions is also available
	       as POD documentation! You can read this on your own system by

		   perldoc DBI::FAQ

	       This may be more convenient to persons not permanently, or con‐
	       veniently, connected to the Internet. The DBI::FAQ module
	       should be downloaded and installed for the more up-to-date ver‐

	       The version of DBI::FAQ shipped with the "DBI" module may be
	       slightly out of date.

	   POD in general
	       Information on writing POD, and on the philosophy of POD in
	       general, can be read by typing:

		   perldoc perlpod

	       Users with the Tk module installed may be interested to learn
	       there is a Tk-based POD reader available called "tkpod", which
	       formats POD in a convenient and readable way. This is available
	       via CPAN as the module called Tk::POD and is highly recom‐

       Driver and Database Characteristics
	   The driver summaries that were produced for Appendix B of "Program‐
	   ming the Perl DBI" are available online at:


	   in the driver information table. These summaries contain standard‐
	   ised information on each driver and database which should aid you
	   in selecting a database to use. It will also inform you quickly of
	   any issues within drivers or whether a driver is not fully compli‐
	   ant with the DBI Specification.

       Rambles, Tidbits and Observations

	   There are a series of occasional rambles from various people on the
	   DBI mailing lists who, in an attempt to clear up a simple point,
	   end up drafting fairly comprehensive documents. These are quite
	   often varying in quality, but do provide some insights into the
	   workings of the interfaces.

	   A list of articles discussing the DBI can be found on the DBI WWW
	   page at:


	   These articles are of varying quality and age, from the original
	   Perl Journal article written by Alligator and Tim, to more recent
	   debacles published online from about.com.

       README files
	   The README files included with each driver occasionally contains
	   some useful information ( no, really! ) that may be pertinent to
	   the user.  Please read them. It makes our worthless existences more
	   bearable. These can all be read from the main DBI WWW page at:


       Mailing Lists
	   There are three mailing lists for DBI:

	       dbi-announce@perl.org	 -- for announcements, very low traffic
	       dbi-users@perl.org	 -- general user support
	       dbi-dev@perl.org		 -- for driver developers (no user support)

	   For information on how to subscribe, set digest mode etc, and
	   unsubscribe, send an email message (the content will be ignored)


       Mailing List Archives
	   US Mailing List Archives

	       Searchable hypermail archives of the three mailing lists, and
	       some of the much older traffic have been set up for users to

	   European Mailing List Archives

	       As per the US archive above.

Compilation Problems
       2.1. Compilation problems or "It fails the test!"

       First off, consult the README for that driver in case there is useful
       information about the problem. It may be a known problem for your given
       architecture and operating system or database. You can check the README
       files for each driver in advance online at:


       If it's a known problem, you'll probably have to wait till it gets
       fixed. If you're really needing it fixed, try the following:

       Attempt to fix it yourself
	   This technique is generally not recommended to the faint-hearted.
	   If you do think you have managed to fix it, then, send a patch file
	   ( context diff ) to the author with an explanation of:

	   *   What the problem was, and test cases, if possible.

	   *   What you needed to do to fix it. Please make sure you mention

	   *   Platform information, database version, perl version, module
	       version and DBI version.

       Email the author Do NOT whinge!
	   Please email the address listed in the WWW pages for whichever
	   driver you are having problems with. Do not directly email the
	   author at a known address unless it corresponds with the one

	   We tend to have real jobs to do, and we do read the mailing lists
	   for problems. Besides, we may not have access to <insert your
	   favourite brain-damaged platform here> and couldn't be of any
	   assistance anyway! Apologies for sounding harsh, but that's the way
	   of it!

	   However, you might catch one of these creative genii at 3am when
	   we're doing this sort of stuff anyway, and get a patch within 5
	   minutes. The atmosphere in the DBI circle is that we do appreciate
	   the users' problems, since we work in similar environments.

	   If you are planning to email the author, please furnish as much
	   information as possible, ie:

	   *   ALL the information asked for in the README file in the prob‐
	       lematic module. And we mean ALL of it. We don't put lines like
	       that in documentation for the good of our health, or to meet
	       obscure README file standards of length.

	   *   If you have a core dump, try the Devel::CoreStack module for
	       generating a stack trace from the core dump. Send us that too.
	       Devel::CoreStack can be found on CPAN at:


	   *   Module versions, perl version, test cases, operating system
	       versions and any other pertinent information.

	   Remember, the more information you send us, the quicker we can
	   track problems down. If you send us no useful information, expect
	   nothing back.

	   Finally, please be aware that some authors, including Tim Bunce,
	   specifically request that you do not mail them directly. Please
	   respect their wishes and use the email addresses listed in the
	   appropriate module "README" file.

       Email the dbi-users Mailing List
	   It's usually a fairly intelligent idea to cc the mailing list any‐
	   way with problems. The authors all read the lists, so you lose
	   nothing by mailing there.

Platform and Driver Issues
       3.1 What's the difference between ODBC and DBI?

       In terms of architecture - not much: Both define programming inter‐
       faces. Both allow multiple drivers to be loaded to do the actual work.

       In terms of ease of use - much: The DBI is a 'high level' interface
       that, like Perl itself, strives to make the simple things easy while
       still making the hard things possible. The ODBC is a 'low level' inter‐
       face. All nuts-bolts-knobs-and-dials.

       Now there's an ODBC driver for the DBI (DBD::ODBC) the "What's the dif‐
       ference" question is more usefully rephrased as:

       Chapter 7 of "Programming the Perl DBI" covers this topic in far more
       detail and should be consulted.

       3.2 What's the difference between Win32::ODBC and DBD::ODBC?

       The DBI, and thus DBD::ODBC, has a different philosophy from the
       Win32::ODBC module:

       The Win32::ODBC module is a 'thin' layer over the low-level ODBC API.
       The DBI defines a simpler 'higher level' interface.

       The Win32::ODBC module gives you access to more of the ODBC API.	 The
       DBI and DBD::ODBC give you access to only the essentials.  (But, unlike
       Win32::ODBC, the DBI and DBD::ODBC do support parameter binding and
       multiple prepared statements which reduces the load on the database
       server and can dramatically increase performance.)

       The Win32::ODBC module only works on Win32 systems.  The DBI and
       DBD::ODBC are very portable and work on Win32 and Unix.

       The DBI and DBD::ODBC modules are supplied as a standard part of the
       Perl 5.004 binary distribution for Win32 (they don't work with the
       older, non-standard, ActiveState port).

       Scripts written with the DBI and DBD::ODBC are faster than Win32::ODBC
       on Win32 and are trivially portable to other supported database types.

       The DBI offers optional automatic printing or die()ing on errors which
       makes applications simpler and more robust.

       The current DBD::ODBC driver version 0.16 is new and not yet fully sta‐
       ble.  A new release is due soon [relative to the date of the next TPJ
       issue :-] and will be much improved and offer more ODBC functionality.

       To summarise: The Win32::ODBC module is your best choice if you need
       access to more of the ODBC API than the DBI gives you. Otherwise, the
       DBI and DBD::ODBC combination may be your best bet.

       Chapter 7 of "Programming the Perl DBI" covers this topic in far more
       detail and should be consulted.

       3.3 Is DBI supported under Windows 95 / NT platforms?

       Finally, yes! Jeff Urlwin has been working diligently on building DBI
       and DBD::ODBC under these platforms, and, with the advent of a stabler
       perl and a port of MakeMaker, the project has come on by great leaps
       and bounds.

       The DBI and DBD::Oracle Win32 ports are now a standard part of DBI, so,
       downloading DBI of version higher than 0.81 should work fine as should
       using the most recent DBD::Oracle version.

       3.4 Can I access Microsoft Access or SQL-Server databases with DBI?

       Yes, use the DBD::ODBC driver.

       3.5 Is the a DBD for <insert favourite database here>?

       Is is listed on the DBI drivers page?


       If not, no. A complete absence of a given database driver from that
       page means that no-one has announced any intention to work on it, not
       that such a driver is impossible to write.

       A corollary of the above statement implies that if you see an announce‐
       ment for a driver not on the above page, there's a good chance it's not
       actually a DBI driver, and may not conform to the specifications.
       Therefore, questions concerning problems with that code should not
       really be addressed to the DBI Mailing Lists.

       3.6 What's DBM? And why should I use DBI instead?

       Extracted from ``DBI - The Database Interface for Perl 5'':

	   ``UNIX was originally blessed with simple file-based ``databases'', namely
	   the dbm system. dbm lets you store data in files, and retrieve
	   that data quickly. However, it also has serious drawbacks.

	       File Locking

	       The dbm systems did not allow particularly robust file locking
	       capabilities, nor any capability for correcting problems arising through
	       simultaneous writes [ to the database ].

	       Arbitrary Data Structures

	       The dbm systems only allows a single fixed data structure:
	       key-value pairs. That value could be a complex object, such as a
	       [ C ] struct, but the key had to be unique. This was a large
	       limitation on the usefulness of dbm systems.

	   However, dbm systems still provide a useful function for users with
	   simple datasets and limited resources, since they are fast, robust and
	   extremely well-tested. Perl modules to access dbm systems have now
	   been integrated into the core Perl distribution via the
	   AnyDBM_File module.''

       To sum up, DBM is a perfectly satisfactory solution for essentially
       read-only databases, or small and simple datasets. However, for more
       scaleable dataset handling, not to mention robust transactional lock‐
       ing, users are recommended to use a more powerful database engine via

       Chapter 2 of "Programming the Perl DBI" discusses DBM files in detail.

       3.7 What database do you recommend me using?

       This is a particularly thorny area in which an objective answer is dif‐
       ficult to come by, since each dataset, proposed usage and system con‐
       figuration differs from person to person.

       From the current author's point of view, if the dataset is relatively
       small, being tables of less than 1 million rows, and less than 1000
       tables in a given database, then mSQL is a perfectly acceptable solu‐
       tion to your problem. This database is extremely cheap, is wonderfully
       robust and has excellent support. More information is available on the
       Hughes Technology WWW site at:


       You may also wish to look at MySQL which is a more powerful database
       engine that has a similar feel to mSQL.


       If the dataset is larger than 1 million row tables or 1000 tables, or
       if you have either more money, or larger machines, I would recommend
       Oracle RDBMS.  Oracle's WWW site is an excellent source of more infor‐


       Informix is another high-end RDBMS that is worth considering. There are
       several differences between Oracle and Informix which are too complex
       for this document to detail. Information on Informix can be found on
       their WWW site at:


       In the case of WWW fronted applications, mSQL may be a better option
       due to slow connection times between a CGI script and the Oracle RDBMS
       and also the amount of resource each Oracle connection will consume.
       mSQL is lighter resource-wise and faster.

       These views are not necessarily representative of anyone else's opin‐
       ions, and do not reflect any corporate sponsorship or views. They are
       provided as-is.

       3.8 Is <insert feature here> supported in DBI?

       Given that we're making the assumption that the feature you have
       requested is a non-standard database-specific feature, then the answer
       will be no.

       DBI reflects a generic API that will work for most databases, and has
       no database-specific functionality.

       However, driver authors may, if they so desire, include hooks to data‐
       base-specific functionality through the "func()" method defined in the
       DBI API.	 Script developers should note that use of functionality pro‐
       vided via the "func()" methods is very unlikely to be portable across

Programming Questions
       4.1 Is DBI any use for CGI programming?

       In a word, yes! DBI is hugely useful for CGI programming! In fact, I
       would tentatively say that CGI programming is one of two top uses for

       DBI confers the ability to CGI programmers to power WWW-fronted data‐
       bases to their users, which provides users with vast quantities of
       ordered data to play with. DBI also provides the possibility that, if a
       site is receiving far too much traffic than their database server can
       cope with, they can upgrade the database server behind the scenes with
       no alterations to the CGI scripts.

       4.2 How do I get faster connection times with DBD::Oracle and CGI?

	   Contributed by John D. Groenveld

       The Apache "httpd" maintains a pool of "httpd" children to service
       client requests.

       Using the Apache mod_perl module by Doug MacEachern, the perl inter‐
       preter is embedded with the "httpd" children. The CGI, DBI, and your
       other favorite modules can be loaded at the startup of each child.
       These modules will not be reloaded unless changed on disk.

       For more information on Apache, see the Apache Project's WWW site:


       The mod_perl module can be downloaded from CPAN via:


       4.3 How do I get persistent connections with DBI and CGI?

	   Contributed by John D. Groenveld

       Using Edmund Mergl's Apache::DBI module, database logins are stored in
       a hash with each of these "httpd" child. If your application is based
       on a single database user, this connection can be started with each
       child.  Currently, database connections cannot be shared between
       "httpd" children.

       Apache::DBI can be downloaded from CPAN via:


       4.4 ``When I run a perl script from the command line, it works, but,
       when I run it under the "httpd", it fails!'' Why?

       Basically, a good chance this is occurring is due to the fact that the
       user that you ran it from the command line as has a correctly config‐
       ured set of environment variables, in the case of DBD::Oracle, vari‐
       ables like "ORACLE_HOME", "ORACLE_SID" or "TWO_TASK".

       The "httpd" process usually runs under the user id of "nobody", which
       implies there is no configured environment. Any scripts attempting to
       execute in this situation will correctly fail.

       One way to solve this problem is to set the environment for your data‐
       base in a "BEGIN { }" block at the top of your script. Another tech‐
       nique is to configure your WWW server to pass-through certain environ‐
       ment variables to your CGI scripts.

       Similarly, you should check your "httpd" error logfile for any clues,
       as well as the ``Idiot's Guide To Solving Perl / CGI Problems'' and
       ``Perl CGI Programming FAQ'' for further information. It is unlikely
       the problem is DBI-related.

       The ``Idiot's Guide To Solving Perl / CGI Problems'' can be located at:


       as can the ``Perl CGI Programming FAQ''. Read BOTH these documents

       4.5 How do I get the number of rows returned from a "SELECT" statement?

       Count them. Read the DBI docs for the "rows()" method.

Miscellaneous Questions
       5.1 Can I do multi-threading with DBI?

       Perl version 5.005 and later can be built to support multi-threading.
       The DBI, as of version 1.02, does not yet support multi-threading so it
       would be unsafe to let more than one thread enter the DBI at the same

       It is expected that some future version of the DBI will at least be
       thread-safe (but not thread-hot) by automatically blocking threads
       intering the DBI while it's already in use.

       For some OCI example code for Oracle that has multi-threaded "SELECT"
       statements, see:


       5.2 How do I handle BLOB data with DBI?

       Handling BLOB data with the DBI is very straight-forward. BLOB columns
       are specified in a SELECT statement as per normal columns. However, you
       also need to specify a maximum BLOB size that the <I>database han‐
       dle</I> can fetch using the "LongReadLen" attribute.

       For example:

	   ### $dbh is a connected database handle
	   $sth = $dbh->prepare( "SELECT blob_column FROM blobby_table" );

       would fail.

	   ### $dbh is a connected database handle
	   ### Set the maximum BLOB size...
	   $dbh->{LongReadLen} = 16384;	       ### 16Kb...Not much of a BLOB!

	   $sth = $dbh->prepare( "..." );

       would succeed <I>provided no column values were larger than the speci‐
       fied value</I>.

       If the BLOB data is longer than the value of "LongReadLen", then an
       error will occur. However, the DBI provides an additional piece of
       functionality that will automatically truncate the fetched BLOB to the
       size of "LongReadLen" if it is longer. This does not cause an error to
       occur, but may make your fetched BLOB data useless.

       This behaviour is regulated by the "LongTruncOk" attribute which is
       defaultly set to a false value ( thus making overlong BLOB fetches fail

	   ### Set BLOB handling such that it's 16Kb and can be truncated
	   $dbh->{LongReadLen} = 16384;
	   $dbh->{LongTruncOk} = 1;

       Truncation of BLOB data may not be a big deal in cases where the BLOB
       contains run-length encoded data, but data containing checksums at the
       end, for example, a ZIP file, would be rendered useless.

       5.3 How can I invoke stored procedures with DBI?

       The DBI does not define a database-independent way of calling stored

       However, most database that support them also provide a way to call
       them from SQL statements - and the DBI certainly supports that.

       So, assuming that you have created a stored procedure within the target
       database, eg, an Oracle database, you can use $dbh->"do()" to immedi‐
       ately execute the procedure. For example,

	   $dbh->do( "BEGIN someProcedure; END;" );   # Oracle-specific

       You should also be able to "prepare" and "execute", which is the recom‐
       mended way if you'll be calling the procedure often.

       5.4 How can I get return values from stored procedures with DBI?

	   Contributed by Jeff Urlwin

	   $sth = $dbh->prepare( "BEGIN foo(:1, :2, :3); END;" );
	   $sth->bind_param(1, $a);
	   $sth->bind_param_inout(2, \$path, 2000);
	   $sth->bind_param_inout(3, \$success, 2000);

       Remember to perform error checking, though! ( Or use the "RaiseError"
       attribute ).

       5.5 How can I create or drop a database with DBI?

       Database creation and deletion are concepts that are entirely too
       abstract to be adequately supported by DBI. For example, Oracle does
       not support the concept of dropping a database at all! Also, in Oracle,
       the database server essentially is the database, whereas in mSQL, the
       server process runs happily without any databases created in it. The
       problem is too disparate to attack in a worthwhile way.

       Some drivers, therefore, support database creation and deletion through
       the private "func()" methods. You should check the documentation for
       the drivers you are using to see if they support this mechanism.

       5.6 How can I "commit" or "rollback" a statement with DBI?

       See the "commit()" and "rollback()" methods in the DBI Specification.

       Chapter 6 of "Programming the Perl DBI" discusses transaction handling
       within the context of DBI in more detail.

       5.7 How are "NULL" values handled by DBI?

       "NULL" values in DBI are specified to be treated as the value "undef".
       "NULL"s can be inserted into databases as "NULL", for example:

	   $rv = $dbh->do( "INSERT INTO table VALUES( NULL )" );

       but when queried back, the "NULL"s should be tested against "undef".
       This is standard across all drivers.

       5.8 What are these "func()" methods all about?

       The "func()" method is defined within DBI as being an entry point for
       database-specific functionality, eg, the ability to create or drop
       databases. Invoking these driver-specific methods is simple, for exam‐
       ple, to invoke a "createDatabase" method that has one argument, we
       would write:

	   $rv =$dbh->func( 'argument', 'createDatabase' );

       Software developers should note that the "func()" methods are non-por‐
       table between databases.

       5.9 Is DBI Year 2000 Compliant?

       DBI has no knowledge of understanding of what dates are. Therefore, DBI
       itself does not have a Year 2000 problem. Individual drivers may use
       date handling code internally and therefore be potentially susceptible
       to the Year 2000 problem, but this is unlikely.

       You may also wish to read the ``Does Perl have a Year 2000 problem?''
       section of the Perl FAQ at:


Support and Training
       The Perl5 Database Interface is FREE software. IT COMES WITHOUT WAR‐
       RANTY OF ANY KIND. See the DBI README for more details.

       However, some organizations are providing either technical support or
       training programs on DBI. The present author has no knowledge as to the
       quality of these services. The links are included for reference pur‐
       poses only and should not be regarded as recommendations in any way.
       Caveat emptor.

       Commercial Support

       The Perl Clinic
	   The Perl Clinic provides commercial support for Perl and Perl
	   related problems, including the DBI and its drivers.	 Support is
	   provided by the company with whom Tim Bunce, author of DBI and
	   DBD::Oracle, works and ActiveState. For more information on their
	   services, please see:



       Westlake Solutions
	   A hands-on class for experienced Perl CGI developers that teaches
	   how to write database-connected CGI scripts using Perl and DBI.pm.
	   This course, along with four other courses on CGI scripting with
	   Perl, is taught in Washington, DC; Arlington, Virginia; and on-site
	   worldwide upon request.



	   for more details.

Other References
       In this section, we present some miscellaneous WWW links that may be of
       some interest to DBI users. These are not verified and may result in
       unknown sites or missing documents.


       Alligator Descartes <http://www.symbolstone.org/descarte/contact.html>.
       Portions are Copyright their original stated authors.

       This document is Copyright (c)1994-2000 Alligator Descartes, with por‐
       tions Copyright (c)1994-2000 their original authors. This module is
       released under the 'Artistic' license which you can find in the perl

       This document is Copyright (c)1997-2000 Alligator Descartes. All rights
       reserved.  Permission to distribute this document, in full or in part,
       via email, Usenet, ftp archives or http is granted providing that no
       charges are involved, reasonable attempt is made to use the most cur‐
       rent version and all credits and copyright notices are retained ( the
       AUTHOR and COPYRIGHT sections ).	 Requests for other distribution
       rights, including incorporation into commercial products, such as
       books, magazine articles or CD-ROMs should be made to Alligator
       Descartes <http://www.symbolstone.org/descarte/contact.html>.

perl v5.8.8			  2007-05-13			   DBI::FAQ(3)

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