The Ultimate Guide to SQL to_char() Function

The Ultimate Guide to SQL to_char() Function

In this article, we'll take a closer look at the TO_CHAR() function in SQL and how it can be used to convert dates and other data types into character strings

What is SQL to_char()

The Oracle SQL to_char() is a function that converts a date, datetime, time, timestamp, or numeric value to a string. You can use it to format dates, numbers, and other values. For example, you can use it to display a date in a specific format or to round a number to a certain number of decimal places.

How to format dates, numbers, and text using to_char()

To use the SQL to_char() function, you need to provide two arguments: the value to convert and the format to use. The format argument is optional, but it's a good idea to include it so you can control how the value is displayed.

SQL to_char() Syntax

The SQL to_char() function syntax to format a date:

SELECT TO_CHAR(date, 'DD-MM-YYYY');

This query will convert the date value to a string in the DD-MM-YYYY format. You can use any format, but it's important to use a format that makes sense for the value you're converting.

You can also use the SQL to_char() function to convert a numeric value to a string. For example, you might want to round a number to two decimal places:

The SQL to_char() function syntax to format a numeric value:

SELECT TO_CHAR(number, '0.00');

This query will convert the number value to a string in the 0.00 format. It rounds the number to two decimal places.

You can also use the SQL to_char() function for other values, but these are some of the most common uses. Now that you know how to use it, let's look at some examples.

Example:

SELECT TO_CHAR(1234.5678, '0.00');
Returns 1234.56

In this example, we're converting the number 1234.56 to a string in the 0.00 format. This rounds the number to two decimal places and display it as 1234.56.

Example:

SELECT TO_CHAR(date, 'DD-MM-YYYY');
Returns 14-07-2022

In this example, we're converting the date value to a string in the DD-MM-YYYY format. This will display the date as 21-03-2020.

The TO_CHAR() function has a number of options that can be used to control the format of the resulting string. TO_CHAR() can be used to convert dates to strings in a variety of formats, including:

TO_CHAR (date, 'DD-MM-YYYY')

TO_CHAR (date, 'DD/MM/YYYY')

TO_CHAR (date, 'MM-DD-YYYY')

TO_CHAR (date, 'MM/DD/YYYY')

TO_CHAR (date, 'MONTH DD, YYYY')

TO_CHAR (date, 'MON DD YYYY'

Pattern Modifiers

Find some more useful pattern modifiers for the SQL to_char() function below.

https://www.postgresql.org/docs/9.1/functions-formatting.html

Note The To_CHAR function only works with Oracle. However, you can use the CONVERT() or CAST() functions in SQL Server.

Conclusion

As you can see, the SQL to_char() function is a powerful tool that can be used to format dates and numbers. We hope this blog post has been helpful in explaining how it works. If you have any questions, please feel free to leave a comment below.

Happy coding! :)

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