What’s in Your ODBC Driver?

ODBC with Db2 for IBM iSince IBM announced Yum support for installing the IBM i Db2 ODBC driver, as documented in our recent tutorial, users can update their driver more easily.

To help users determine what’s changed, IBM maintains a list of fixes and enhancements for each IBM i ODBC driver release.

For example, the ODBC driver that runs natively on IBM i (known as the PASE driver) has its changes documented here. The update page contains two main update sections:

  • APAR Fixes, which are based on customer support requests
  • Enhancements and Internal Fixes, made on the initiative of the IBM driver team

Per the IBM i Db2 ODBC driver update page, here are a few notable recent fixes and enhancements:

Version (May 2021 build)
  • “Add TrimCharFields connection option to trim trailing blank characters when retrieving CHAR and GRAPHIC fields. Setting this option to 1 will enable trimming, while setting it to 0 (default) will disable trimming.”
Version (May 2022 build)
  • “Add support for IBM i 7.5 PWDLVL 4”
  • “Add support for IBM i 7.5 BOOLEAN SQL data type”
  • “SQL_DESC_OCTET_LENGTH and SQL_DESC_DISPLAY_LENGTH now take in to account any expansion that might occur due to CCSID conversion. For instance, a CHAR(10) EBCDIC column will now return 20 instead of 10 for the above attributes when the client is in UTF-8 since extended ASCII characters take 2 bytes in UTF-8 but only 1 byte in EBCDIC. This allows retrieving the full column data in PHP’s odbc and pdo_odbc extensions, especially on IBM i 7.4 and beyond where the default PASE CCSID is 1208.

    SEIDEN NOTE: The “SQL…LENGTH” enhancement fixed a bug affecting “accented” characters and other characters represented by multiple bytes in UTF-8 (CCSID 1208).

Other IBM i ODBC driver update pages

Mac, Linux, and Windows are given their own IBM i ODBC driver update pages:

Thanks to IBM’s Kevin Adler for telling me about these IBM update pages.

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