How do I concatenate fields together but keep their true field lengths? I am trying to join three varchar2 length(2)fields together but need to keep the spaces in these fields to create a 5 item code.
In Oracle, you need to dynamically determine the length of the string and pad it with spaces. Here's how it would look:
SELECT FirstString || RPAD(' ',2-NVL(LENGTH(FirstString),0)) || SecondString || RPAD(' ',2-NVL(LENGTH(SecondString),0)) || ThirdString || RPAD(' ',2-NVL(LENGTH(ThirdString),0)) FROM YourTable
In SQL Server, you could do it one of two ways. This is simply a rewrite of the Oracle method using SQL Server specific functions:
SELECT FirstString + REPLICATE(' ',2-DATALENGTH(FirstString)) + SecondString + REPLICATE(' ',2-DATALENGTH(SecondString)) + ThirdString + REPLICATE(' ',2-DATALENGTH(ThirdString)) FROM YourTable
The other way, which I prefer, casts each column to a fixed length column:
SELECT CAST (FirstString as CHAR(2)) + CAST (SecondString as CHAR(2)) + CAST (ThirdString as CHAR(2)) FROM YourTable
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