Mapping a Single-Valued Field to a Column

A primitive or single-valued Java field usually is mapped to a single column of a table. Some implementations allow a field to be mapped to multiple columns, but such a feature is not supported by most implementations or needed in most applications. When mapping a Java field to a relational column, you need to consider the name and the type to be used for the associated column. The types are always different, since Java and SQL have their own distinct type systems. The name of the field and column can be either the same or different.


When you’re mapping a field in Java to a relational column, you can use different names. In some cases, you may have to use a different name, because some names in Java may not be allowable as a column name in the relational database. In Java, class and field names are case-sensitive Unicode characters. Some relational databases and JDBC drivers may have restrictions on the names that are used (e.g., the table and column names must be US ASCII, names are case-insensitive, or names must be uppercase). Using a field or class name that is a keyword in SQL or the relational database also necessitates a mapping to a different name in the datastore.

You may wish to map the firstName field of the Customer class to a column named fname:

<class name="Customer" > <field name="firstName" > <extension vendor-name="vendorX" key="column" value="fname"/> <extension vendor-name="vendorY" key="sqlname" value="fname"/> ...

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