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MySQL | LOCATE method

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String
schedule Mar 10, 2022
Last updated
local_offer MySQL
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MySQL's LOCATE(~) method returns the position of the first occurrence of a substring in str starting from the specified position pos.

Parameters

1. substr | string

The substring we are trying to find in str.

2. str | string

The input string we are trying to locate the substring in.

3. pos | number | optional

The starting position for the search. Defaults to 1.

Return value

The return value depends on the following cases:

Case

Return value

Position of first occurrence of substr

If the substr exists in str on or after pos

0

If the substr does NOT exist in str after pos

Examples

Consider the following table about some students:

student_id

fname

lname

day_enrolled

age

username

1

Sky

Towner

2015-12-03

17

stowner1

2

Ben

Davis

2016-04-20

19

bdavis2

3

Travis

Apple

2018-08-14

18

tapple3

4

Arthur

David

2016-04-01

16

adavid4

5

Benjamin

Town

2014-01-01

17

btown5

The above sample table can be created using the code here.

Basic usage

To find the position of the first occurrence of 'd' in usernames:

SELECT username, LOCATE('d', username) AS 'Position of d'
FROM students;
+----------+---------------+
| username | Position of d |
+----------+---------------+
| stowner1 | 0 |
| bdavis2 | 2 |
| tapple3 | 0 |
| adavid4 | 2 |
| btown5 | 0 |
+----------+---------------+

Note that counting of position starts at 1 in MySQL unlike some other programming languages that start at 0.

Position parameter

To find position of first occurrence of 'd' in usernames from position 3:

SELECT username, LOCATE('d', username, 3) AS 'Position of d'
FROM students;
+----------+---------------+
| username | Position of d |
+----------+---------------+
| stowner1 | 0 |
| bdavis2 | 0 |
| tapple3 | 0 |
| adavid4 | 6 |
| btown5 | 0 |
+----------+---------------+

Note that the username bdavis2 returns 0 as the 'd' occurs before position 3.

Case sensitivity

The search is NOT case-sensitive:

SELECT username, LOCATE('D', username, 3) AS 'Position of D'
FROM students;
+----------+---------------+
| username | Position of D |
+----------+---------------+
| stowner1 | 0 |
| bdavis2 | 0 |
| tapple3 | 0 |
| adavid4 | 6 |
| btown5 | 0 |
+----------+---------------+

Even when using 'D' (capital letter) as our substring, we still find a match in username adavid4.

robocat
Published by Arthur Yanagisawa
Edited by 0 others
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