What is JDBC? It is Java Database Connectivity. For many applications we find it useful to save data to files.
We have already done this with object serialization and random access files, but sometimes it is better
to use a more standardized database centric approach. SQL, or structured query language, is a well known
protocol for handling data. There are many DBMS, or database management systems, that implement the SQL
which is why a brief lesson on Java and SQL is in order. I will be covering only a few SQL statements,
the entire SQL is beyond the scope of this tutorial. It is possible that you will never have to use
SQL because of other file system protocols implemented by Java, so if you don't want to use SQL then
you probably won't have to.

In the current version of the Java Development Kit, the JDBC DBMS called "Java DB" comes prepackaged
with the kit. You only need to take a few small steps to get it up and running.

First, you must include the Java DB bin folder in the PATH environment variable similar to how we
did with the bin folder of the JDK in the first lesson of this tutorial. In Microsoft Windows open
up the "System" window and go to "Advanced system settings" on the left then click on "Environment
Variables..." near the bottom of the dialog box. In the "System variables" section scroll down to
the variable named "Path". Click "Edit...". After where you entered the JDK bin folder from lesson 1,
type in the path to where your JDK is installed then add "\db\bin" directly after it, so the path
should look similar to \db\bin(mine looks like "c:\Program Files\Java\jdk1.8.0_92\db\bin").
Now you will be able to execute the "ij" command line utility included with "Java DB" which will
allow you to create databases.

Second, you must place several libraries included with "Java DB" into the installed libraries for
your JDK. The files you need to copy and paste into your JDK are derby.jar, derbyoptionaltools.jar,
and derbytools.jar . All three files can be found in \db\lib . They must be copied
into \jre\lib\ext .

Next, we need to create a database. Create a new folder for testing. Open up your command line console
and navigate to the folder you just created. Execute the command "ij". You should see a line that
looks like "ij>". Type in the following instruction "connect 'jdbc:derby:MyDbTest;create=true';".
The last instruction will create a database called MyDbTest in the current folder; you will see
a new folder called MyDbTest inside the current folder. Any time you want to create a database
you will need to repeat the instruction with "connect" in it with the "MyDbTest" part of the
instruction corresponding to the name of the database. So, if you wanted to create another database
named "MyDatabase" you would execute "ij" and type in the instruction "connect 'jdbc:derby:MyDatabase;create=true';".

Now that we have our Java DB installed and our database created we can write some Java code that
will process data and manage our database.

Here is the example:
import java.sql.*; class JDBCExample { public static void main(String args[]) { try { Class.forName("org.apache.derby.jdbc.EmbeddedDriver"); Connection connection=DriverManager.getConnection("jdbc:derby:MyDbTest"); Statement statement=connection.createStatement(); try { statement.execute("DROP TABLE Persons"); } catch(Exception ex) { } statement=connection.createStatement(); statement.execute("CREATE TABLE Persons (name varchar(255), phone varchar(255), email varchar(255))"); statement=connection.createStatement(); statement.execute("INSERT INTO Persons (name, phone, email) VALUES ('John Smith', '012-345-6789', 'john@test.com')"); statement=connection.createStatement(); statement.execute("INSERT INTO Persons (name, phone, email) VALUES ('Joe Smith', '987-654-3210', 'joe@test.com')"); statement=connection.createStatement(); statement.execute("INSERT INTO Persons (name, phone, email) VALUES ('Mary Smith', '121-212-1212', 'mary@test.com')"); statement=connection.createStatement(); statement.execute("UPDATE Persons SET phone='878-787-8787' WHERE name LIKE 'Mary%'"); statement=connection.createStatement(); statement.execute("DELETE FROM Persons WHERE name='Joe Smith'"); statement=connection.createStatement(); ResultSet resultSet=statement.executeQuery("select name, phone, email from Persons"); while (resultSet.next()) System.out.println(resultSet.getString(1) + "\t" + resultSet.getString(2) + "\t" + resultSet.getString(3)); connection.close(); } catch(Exception ex) { ex.printStackTrace(); } } }
The import statement imports the necessary SQL libraries for our example. In the "main" function Class.forName is called to load the jdbc driver into memory. Next, a Connection object is declared with its target set to the "MyDbTest" that we created earlier in this lesson. After we have our connection we need to create statements to execute with our connection. The statements' operations are:
  • DROP TABLE: Delete table
  • CREATE TABLE: Create a new table with the given table fields
  • INSERT INTO: Insert a record into the table
  • UPDATE: Update all records in the table that correspond to the given WHERE clause
  • DELETE FROM: Delete all records in the table that correspond to the given WHERE clause
  • select: Select all records in the table(a WHERE clause can be specified if desired)
The "DROP TABLE" statement only makes sense for this example. Typically, we would only call "DROP TABLE" if we wanted to permanently delete all the data in our table. The "CREATE TABLE" statement only needs to be executed once in the event that we want to create a new table; we wouldn't re-create the same table every time we execute the program. In other words, we would create a table once and reuse it whenever some new data needs to be stored in persistent files. Notice the line of code with "UPDATE", in the WHERE clause rather than using an "=" we use the word "LIKE". This is necessary because we use a wildcard(the "%"). The "%" means match any text with multiple characters, so 'Mary%' will match 'Mary Smith'. Scroll down to where we declare a ResultSet. The ResultSet stores all the records returned from a SELECT query. In the following loop we iterate through all the records returned. The "getString" function is called to get the data in each field. Notice how the fields aren't indexed starting with 0; they are indexed starting with 1, so "getString(1)" gets the first field returned which in our case is the "name" field. Lastly, we close the connection to our database and the program exits. In this lesson, you learned how to install "Java DB" and create a database using the "ij" command line tool. You learned how to load a jdbc driver into memory and how to use DriverManager to return a connection to a database. Also, you learned how to create statements that are used to execute commands over your connection.