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ltrim and rtrim sometimes doensn't work on sql server.

Posted on 2013-01-20
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Last Modified: 2013-01-21
Is there any setting required, as sometimes ltrim and rtrim does'nt work.
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Question by:searchsanjaysharma
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Expert Comment

by:Scott Fell, EE MVE
ID: 38800006
Can you define doesn't work?  specific errors
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by:ValentinoV
ValentinoV earned 250 total points
ID: 38800050
LTRIM/RTRIM will only remove spaces. Strings can contain other invisible characters which are not spaces. You may experiencing that.

Use the ASCII function on the first (or last) character in the string to check if it's actually a space.

select ASCII(' ') (with a space in between the quotes) returns 32.
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Guy Hengel [angelIII / a3] earned 250 total points
ID: 38800138
I confirm above. usually it's the "html" space (ascii code 160) which is the culprit.
if you do this:
ltrim(rtrim( replace(yourfield, chr(160), ' ') ))
it will trim those characters also

another gotcha is this: if the field is CHAR (and not VARCHAR), and update it using trim functions, it will will have the trailing spaces.
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Author Closing Comment

by:searchsanjaysharma
ID: 38803644
tx
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Expert Comment

by:Anthony Perkins
ID: 38803784
Is there any setting required, as sometimes ltrim and rtrim does'nt work.
Yeah, it is quite complex, but it involves reading the definition of LTRIM() and RTRIM() in SQL Server's BOL and (this is the important part) understanding how it works or "does'nt work".
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