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Tip of the Day
Language: SQL Server
Expertise: Beginner
Jan 3, 2000

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Error with Type M Field

Question:
I'm trying to access a particular field via an ASP. I presently have a table displaying multiple fields. Everything works fine, but as soon as I try to add a specific field I get the error.

The database I'm pulling from is not well documented, but it lists this particular field as a "Type M." All the other fields I'm pulling from are "Type C" or "Type I." The field contains text as far as I can tell; it's just a "notes" field.

Any idea why it keeps crashing out on this field? If so, what can I do to fix it?

Answer:
My guess is that fields that are coming back to you identified as data type "M" (and this is just a wild guess) are Memo fields. They are used, as you have observed, to store variable-length text.

The problem is that because the length of actual data is variable, there is a different access method attached to data types like text or image.

You need to define a variable of size 255 and use it to fetch succeeding "buckets full" of 255 bytes (using the textptr variable) until you exhaust the contents of the field.

If you can affect the schema, it might be better to recast this field as a VARCHAR(2000) (it can be as big as 8000 if you need it to be) because I think it will simplify accessing this text.

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