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SQL Dialect

Applies to ✅ Open Source Edition   ✅ Express Edition   ✅ Professional Edition   ✅ Enterprise Edition

While jOOQ tries to represent the SQL standard as much as possible, many features are vendor-specific to a given database and to its "SQL dialect". jOOQ models this using the org.jooq.SQLDialect enum type.

The SQL dialect is one of the main attributes of a Configuration. Queries created from DSLContexts will assume dialect-specific behaviour when rendering SQL and binding bind values.

Some parts of the jOOQ API are officially supported only by a given subset of the supported SQL dialects. For instance, the Oracle CONNECT BY clause, which is supported by the Oracle and Informix databases, is annotated with a org.jooq.Support annotation, as such:

 * Add an Oracle-specific <code>CONNECT BY</code> clause to the query
@Support({ SQLDialect.INFORMIX, SQLDialect.ORACLE })
SelectConnectByConditionStep<R> connectBy(Condition condition);

jOOQ API methods which are not annotated with the org.jooq.Support annotation, or which are annotated with the Support annotation, but without any SQL dialects can be safely used in all SQL dialects. An example for this is the SELECT statement factory method:

 * Create a new DSL select statement.
SelectSelectStep<R> select(Field<?>... fields);

jOOQ's SQL clause emulation capabilities

The aforementioned Support annotation does not only designate, which databases natively support a feature. It also indicates that a feature is emulated by jOOQ for some databases lacking this feature. An example of this is the DISTINCT predicate, a predicate syntax defined by SQL:1999 and implemented only by H2, HSQLDB, and Postgres:


Nevertheless, the IS DISTINCT FROM predicate is supported by jOOQ in all dialects, as its semantics can be expressed with an equivalent CASE expression. For more details, see the manual's section about the DISTINCT predicate.

jOOQ and the Oracle SQL dialect

Oracle SQL is much more expressive than many other SQL dialects. It features many unique keywords, clauses and functions that are out of scope for the SQL standard. Some examples for this are

jOOQ has a historic affinity to Oracle's SQL extensions. If something is supported in Oracle SQL, it has a high probability of making it into the jOOQ API


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