DataTable.PrimaryKey Property

 

Gets or sets an array of columns that function as primary keys for the data table.

Namespace:   System.Data
Assembly:  System.Data (in System.Data.dll)

Public Property PrimaryKey As DataColumn()

Property Value

Type: System.Data.DataColumn()

An array of DataColumn objects.

Exception Condition
DataException

The key is a foreign key.

The primary key of a table must be unique to identify the record in the table. It's also possible to have a table with a primary key made up of two or more columns. This occurs when a single column can't contain enough unique values. For example, a two column primary key might consist of a "FirstName" and "LastName" column. Because primary keys can be made up of more than one column, the PrimaryKey property consists of an array of DataColumn objects.

The first example shows how to return the primary key columns for a DataTable displayed in a DataGrid. The second example demonstrates how to set the primary key columns for a DataTable.

Private Sub GetPrimaryKeys(table As DataTable)
   ' Create the array for the columns.
   Dim columns() As DataColumn 
   columns = table.PrimaryKey

   ' Get the number of elements in the array.
   Console.WriteLine("Column Count: " & columns.Length.ToString())
   Dim i As Integer
   For i = 0 To columns.GetUpperBound(0)
      Console.WriteLine(columns(i).ColumnName & columns(i).DataType.ToString())
   Next i
End Sub

Private Sub SetPrimaryKeys()
   ' Create a new DataTable and set two DataColumn objects as primary keys.
   Dim table As DataTable = new DataTable()
   Dim keys(2) As DataColumn
   Dim column  As DataColumn

   ' Create column 1.
   column = New DataColumn()
   column.DataType = System.Type.GetType("System.String")
   column.ColumnName= "FirstName"

   ' Add the column to the DataTable.Columns collection.
   table.Columns.Add(column)
   ' Add the column to the array.
   keys(0) = column

   ' Create column 2 and add it to the array.
   column = New DataColumn()
   column.DataType = System.Type.GetType("System.String")
   column.ColumnName = "LastName"
   table.Columns.Add(column)

   ' Add the column to the array.
   keys(1) = column

   ' Set the PrimaryKeys property to the array.
   table.PrimaryKey = keys
End Sub

.NET Framework
Available since 1.1
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