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TN042: ODBC Driver Developer Recommendations


The following technical note has not been updated since it was first included in the online documentation. As a result, some procedures and topics might be out of date or incorrect. For the latest information, it is recommended that you search for the topic of interest in the online documentation index.

This note describes guidelines for ODBC driver writers. It outlines general requirements and assumptions of ODBC functionality that the MFC Database classes make, and various expected semantic details. Required driver functionality to support the three CRecordset Open modes (forwardOnly, snapshot and dynaset) are described.

The MFC Database classes present functionality to the user that in many cases surpasses the functionality provided by most level 1 ODBC drivers. Fortunately, ODBC's Cursor Library will layer itself between the database classes and the driver, and will automatically provide much of this additional functionality.

For instance, most 1.0 drivers do not support backward scrolling. The Cursor Library can detect this, and will cache rows from the driver and present them as requested on FETCH_PREV calls in SQLExtendedFetch.

Another important example of cursor library dependence is positioned updates. Most 1.0 drivers also do not have positioned updates, but the cursor library will generate update statements which identify a target row on the data source based upon its current cached data values, or a cached timestamp value.

The class library never makes use of multiple rowsets. Therefore, the few SQLSetPos statements are always applied to row 1 of the rowset.

Each CDatabase allocates a single HDBC. (If CDatabase's ExecuteSQL function is used, an HSTMT is temporarily allocated.) So if multiple CDatabase's are required, multiple HDBCs per HENV must be supported.

The database classes require the cursor library. This is reflected in a SQLSetConnections call SQL_ODBC_CURSORS, SQL_CUR_USE_ODBC.

SQLDriverConnect, SQL_DRIVER_COMPLETE is used by CDatabase::Open to establish the connection to the data source.


In order for transactions to be supported for the CDatabase and its dependent recordsets, SQLGetInfo SQL_CURSOR_COMMIT_BEHAVIOR and SQL_CURSOR_ROLLBACK_BEHAVIOR must have SQL_CR_PRESERVE. Otherwise, attempts to perform transaction control will be ignored.

SQLGetInfo SQL_DATA_SOURCE_READ_ONLY must be supported. If it returns "Y", no update operations will be performed on the data source.

If the CDatabase is opened ReadOnly, an attempt to set the data source read only will be made with SQLSetConnectOption SQL_ACCESS_MODE, SQL_MODE_READ_ONLY.

If identifiers require quoting, this information should be returned from the driver with an SQLGetInfo SQL_IDENTIFIER_QUOTE_CHAR call.

For debugging purposes, SQLGetInfo SQL_DBMS_VER and SQL_DBMS_NAME are retrieved from the driver.

SQLSetStmtOption SQL_QUERY_TIMEOUT and SQL_ASYNC_ENABLE may be called on a CDatabase's HDBC.

SQLError may be called with any or all arguments NULL.

Of course, SQLAllocEnv, SQLAllocConnect, SQLDisconnect and SQLFreeConnect must be supported.

In addition to allocating and freeing a temporary HSTMT, ExecuteSQL calls SQLExecDirect, SQLFetch, SQLNumResultCol and SQLMoreResults. SQLCancel may be called on the HSTMT.

SQLGetInfo SQL_DATABASE_NAME will be called.

SQLSetConnectOption SQL_AUTOCOMMIT and SQLTransact SQL_COMMIT, SQL_ROLLBACK and SQL_AUTOCOMMIT will be called if transaction requests are made.

SQLAllocStmt, SQLPrepare, SQLExecute (For Open and Requery), SQLExecDirect (for update operations), SQLFreeStmt must be supported. SQLNumResultCols and SQLDescribeCol will be called on the results set at various times.

SQLSetParam is used extensively for binding parameter data and DATA_AT_EXEC functionality.

SQLBindCol is used extensively to register output Column data storage locations with ODBC.

Two SQLGetData calls are used to retrieve SQL_LONG_VARCHAR and SQL_LONG_VARBINARY data. The first call attempts to find the total length of the column value by calling SQLGetData with cbMaxValue of 0, but with a valid pcbValue. If pcbValue holds SQL_NO_TOTAL, an exception is thrown. Otherwise, an HGLOBAL is allocated, and another SQLGetData call made to retrieve the entire result.

If pessimistic locking is requested, SQLGetInfo SQL_LOCK_TYPES will be queried. If SQL_LCK_EXCLUSIVE is not supported, an exception will be thrown.

Attempts to update a CRecordset (snapshot or dynaset) will cause a second HSTMT to be allocated. For drivers that do not support second HSTMT, the cursor library will simulate this functionality. Unfortunately, this may sometimes mean forcing the current query on the first HSTMT to completion before processing the second HSTMT's request.

SQLFreeStmt SQL_CLOSE and SQL_RESET_PARAMS and SQLGetCursorName will be called during update operations.

If there are CLongBinarys in the outputColumns, ODBC's DATA_AT_EXEC functionality must be supported. This includes returning SQL_NEED_DATA from SQLExecDirect, SQLParamData and SQLPutData.

SQLRowCount is called after executing to verify that only 1 record was updated by the SQLExecDirect.

Only SQLFetch is required for the Move operations. Note that forwardOnly cursors do not support updates.

Snapshot functionality requires SQLExtendedFetch support. As noted above, the ODBC cursor library will detect when a driver does not support SQLExtendedFetch, and provide the necessary support itself.


Below is the minimum support required to open a dynaset:

SQLGetInfo, SQL_ODBC_VER must return > "01".


SQLGetInfo, SQL_ROW_UPDATES must return "Y".


In addition, if pessimistic locking is requested, a call to SQLSetPos with irow 1, fRefresh FALSE and fLock SQL_LCK_EXCLUSIVE will be made.