Remove non ASCII characters from column

  • webskater

    SSCarpal Tunnel

    Points: 4214

    I have a Stored Procedure which returns XML to a traditional .asp web site which has a page where users can download an XML file of their data. Viewing the XML file in Internet Explorer, invariably there are errors that say something like 'an invalid character has been encountered'.

    I am under the impression SQL Server generates XML using UTF-8 and the asp file sets this as the character set.

    I figure the easiest thing to do is simply to remove all non ASCII characters from the column that seems to be causing the problem - a 255 varchar field.

    How can I remove all non-ASCII characters from the field?

    Thanks for any help.

  • Ridget

    SSC Enthusiast

    Points: 131

    Here's a function that accepts a unicode string and spits it back at you without the invalid ASCII characters. Just call it for each column you need to clean up.

    select RemoveNonASCII(col_name) as col_name



    @nstring nvarchar(255)


    RETURNS varchar(255)



    DECLARE @Result varchar(255)

    SET @Result = ''

    DECLARE @nchar nvarchar(1)

    DECLARE @position int

    SET @position = 1

    WHILE @position <= LEN(@nstring)


    SET @nchar = SUBSTRING(@nstring, @position, 1)

    --Unicode & ASCII are the same from 1 to 255.

    --Only Unicode goes beyond 255

    --0 to 31 are non-printable characters

    IF UNICODE(@nchar) between 32 and 255

    SET @Result = @Result + @nchar

    SET @position = @position + 1


    RETURN @Result



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