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Using a Format File to Map Table Columns to Data-File Fields

A data file can contain fields arranged in a different order from the corresponding columns in the table. This topic presents both non-XML and XML format files that have been modified to accommodate a data file whose fields are arranged in a different order from the table columns. The modified format file maps the data fields to their corresponding table columns.

NoteNote

Either a non-XML format file or an XML format file can be used to bulk import a data file into the table by using a bcp command, BULK INSERT statement, or INSERT ... SELECT * FROM OPENROWSET(BULK...) statement. For more information, see Using a Format File to Bulk Import Data.

The examples of modified format files in this topic are based on the following table and data file.

Sample Table

The examples in this topic require that a table named myTestOrder be created in the AdventureWorks sample database under the dbo schema. To create this table, in SQL Server Management Studio Query Editor, execute the following code:

USE AdventureWorks;
GO
CREATE TABLE myTestOrder 
   (
   Col1 smallint,
   Col2 nvarchar(50) ,
   Col3 nvarchar(50) , 
   Col4 nvarchar(50) 
   );
GO

Data File

The data file, myTestOrder-c.txt, contains the following records:

DataField3,DataField2,1,DataField4
DataField3,DataField2,1,DataField4
DataField3,DataField2,1,DataField4

To bulk import data from myTestSkipCol2-c.dat into the myTestSkipCol table, the format file must map the first data field to Col3, the second data field to Col2, the third data field to Col1, and the fourth data field to Col4.

You can change the order of a column mapping by changing the order value for the column to indicate the position of the corresponding data field.

The following sample non-XML format file presents a format file, myTestOrder.fmt, that maps the fields in myTestOrder-c.txt to the columns of the myTestOrder table. For information about how to create the data file and table, see "Sample Table and Data File," earlier in this topic. The format file uses character data format.

The format file contains the following information:

9.0
4
1       SQLCHAR       0       100     ","     3     Col3               SQL_Latin1_General_CP1_CI_AS
2       SQLCHAR       0       100     ","     2     Col2               SQL_Latin1_General_CP1_CI_AS
3       SQLCHAR       0       7       ","     1     Col1               ""
4       SQLCHAR       0       100     "\r\n"  4     Col4               SQL_Latin1_General_CP1_CI_AS

NoteNote

For more information about the layout of non-XML format files, see Understanding Non-XML Format Files.

Example

The following example uses a BULK INSERT statement to bulk import data from the myTestOrder-c.txt data file into the myTestOrder sample table by using the myTestOrder.fmt non-XML format file.

In the SQL Server Management Studio Query Editor, execute:

USE AdventureWorks;
GO
BULK INSERT myTestOrder
FROM 'C:\myTestOrder-c.txt' 
WITH (formatfile='C:\myTestOrder.fmt');
GO

The following sample non-XML format file presents a format file, myTestOrder.xml, that maps the fields in myTestOrder-c.txt to the columns of the myTestOrder table For information about how to create the data file and table, see "Sample Table and Data File," earlier in this topic.

The myTestOrder.xml format file contains the following information:

<?xml version="1.0"?>
<BCPFORMAT xmlns="http://schemas.microsoft.com/sqlserver/2004/bulkload/format" 
xmlns:xsi="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance">
 <RECORD>
  <FIELD ID="1" xsi:type="CharTerm" TERMINATOR="," MAX_LENGTH="100" COLLATION="SQL_Latin1_General_CP1_CI_AS"/>
  <FIELD ID="2" xsi:type="CharTerm" TERMINATOR="," MAX_LENGTH="100" COLLATION="SQL_Latin1_General_CP1_CI_AS"/>
  <FIELD ID="3" xsi:type="CharTerm" TERMINATOR="," MAX_LENGTH="7"/>
  <FIELD ID="4" xsi:type="CharTerm" TERMINATOR="\r\n" MAX_LENGTH="100" COLLATION="SQL_Latin1_General_CP1_CI_AS"/>
 </RECORD>
 <ROW>
  <COLUMN SOURCE="3" NAME="Col1" xsi:type="SQLSMALLINT"/>
  <COLUMN SOURCE="2" NAME="Col2" xsi:type="SQLNVARCHAR"/>
  <COLUMN SOURCE="1" NAME="Col3" xsi:type="SQLNVARCHAR"/>
  <COLUMN SOURCE="4" NAME="Col4" xsi:type="SQLNVARCHAR"/>
 </ROW>
</BCPFORMAT>

NoteNote

For information about the syntax of the XML Schema and additional samples of XML format files, see Understanding XML Format Files.

Example

The following example uses the OPENROWSET bulk rowset provider to import data from the myTestOrder-c.txt data file into the myTestOrder sample table by using the myTestOrder.xml XML format file. The INSERT… SELECT statement specifies the column list in the select list.

In the SQL Server Management Studio Query Editor, execute the following code:

USE AdventureWorks;
GO
INSERT INTO myTestOrder 
  SELECT Col1, Col2, Col3, Col4
      FROM  OPENROWSET(BULK  'C:\myTestOrder-c.txt',
      FORMATFILE='C:\myTestOrder.Xml'  
       ) AS t1;
GO

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