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OdbcDataReader.GetChars Method

Reads a stream of characters from the specified column offset into the buffer as an array, starting at the particular buffer offset.

Namespace: System.Data.Odbc
Assembly: System.Data (in

public override long GetChars (
	int i,
	long dataIndex,
	char[] buffer,
	int bufferIndex,
	int length
public long GetChars (
	int i, 
	long dataIndex, 
	char[] buffer, 
	int bufferIndex, 
	int length
public override function GetChars (
	i : int, 
	dataIndex : long, 
	buffer : char[], 
	bufferIndex : int, 
	length : int
) : long
Not applicable.



The zero-based column ordinal.


The index within the row where the read operation is to start.


The buffer into which to copy data.


The index within the buffer where the write operation is to start.


The number of characters to read.

Return Value

The actual number of characters read.

GetChars returns the number of available characters in the field. Most of the time this is the exact length of the field. However, the number returned may be less than the true length of the field if GetChars has already been used to obtain characters from the field. This may be the case, for example, if the OdbcDataReader is reading a large data structure into a buffer. For more information, see the SequentialAccess setting for CommandBehavior.

If you pass a buffer that is a null value, GetChars returns the length of the field in characters.

Conversions are performed based on the underlying capabilities of the ODBC driver. If the conversion is not supported then the method call will fail.

Windows 98, Windows Server 2000 SP4, Windows Millennium Edition, Windows Server 2003, Windows XP Media Center Edition, Windows XP Professional x64 Edition, Windows XP SP2, Windows XP Starter Edition

The Microsoft .NET Framework 3.0 is supported on Windows Vista, Microsoft Windows XP SP2, and Windows Server 2003 SP1.

.NET Framework

Supported in: 3.0, 2.0, 1.1