How to convert a CLOB type to String in Java?

CLOB stands for Character Large Object in general, an SQL Clob is a built-in datatype and is used to store large amount of textual data. Using this datatype, you can store data up to 2,147,483,647 characters.

The java.sql.Clob interface of the JDBC API represents the CLOB datatype. Since the Clob object in JDBC is implemented using an SQL locator, it holds a logical pointer to the SQL CLOB (not the data).

MySQL database provides support for this data type using four variables namely, TINYTEXT, TEXT, MEDIUMTEXT and, LONGTEXT.

To convert CLOB data type to string

  • Retrieve the Clob value from a table using the getClob() or getCharacterStream() method of the PresparedStatement interface.
Reader r = clob.getCharacterStream();
  • Read each character one by one from the retrieved Stream of characters and append them to the StringBuilder or StringBuffer.
int j = 0;
StringBuffer buffer = new StringBuffer();
int ch;
while ((ch =!=-1) {
  • Finally, display or stored the obtained String.


Let us create a table with name technologies_data in MySQL database using the following query −

CREATE TABLE Technologies (Name VARCHAR(255), Type VARCHAR(255), Article LONGTEXT);

The third column of the table Article stores the data of type CLOB.

Following JDBC program initially inserts 5 records in the technologies_data table storing text file (contents of it) it to the article column (CLOB type).

Then, it retrieves the records of the table and, displays the name and contents of the article. Here, we are trying to converting the data of the retrieved CLOB into String and display it.

import java.sql.Clob;
import java.sql.Connection;
import java.sql.DriverManager;
import java.sql.PreparedStatement;
import java.sql.ResultSet;
import java.sql.Statement;
public class ClobToString {
   public static void main(String args[]) throws Exception {
      //Registering the Driver
      DriverManager.registerDriver(new com.mysql.jdbc.Driver());
      //Getting the connection
      String mysqlUrl = "jdbc:mysql://localhost/sampledatabase";
      Connection con = DriverManager.getConnection(mysqlUrl, "root", "password");
      System.out.println("Connection established......");
      //Creating a Statement object
      Statement stmt = con.createStatement();
      //Inserting values
      String query = "INSERT INTO Technologies_data VALUES (?, ?, ?)";
      PreparedStatement pstmt = con.prepareStatement(query);
      pstmt.setString(1, "JavaFX");
      pstmt.setString(2, "Java Library");
      FileReader reader = new FileReader("E:\images\javafx_contents.txt");
      pstmt.setClob(3, reader);
      pstmt.setString(1, "CoffeeScript");
      pstmt.setString(2, "Scripting Language");
      reader = new FileReader("E:\images\coffeescript_contents.txt");
      pstmt.setClob(3, reader);
      pstmt.setString(1, "Cassandra");
      pstmt.setString(2, "NoSQL Database");
      reader = new FileReader("E:\images\cassandra_contents.txt");
      pstmt.setClob(3, reader);
      //Retrieving the data
      ResultSet rs = stmt.executeQuery("select * from Technologies_data");
      System.out.println("Contents of the table are: ");
      while( {
         System.out.println("Article: "+rs.getString("Name"));
         Clob clob = rs.getClob("Article");
         Reader r = clob.getCharacterStream();
         StringBuffer buffer = new StringBuffer();
         int ch;
         while ((ch =!=-1) {
         System.out.println("Contents: "+buffer.toString());
         System.out.println(" ");


Connection established......
Contents of the table are:
Article: JavaFX
Contents: JavaFX is a Java library using which you can develop Rich Internet Applications. By using Java technology, these applications have a browser penetration rate of 76%.
Article: CoffeeScript
Contents: CoffeeScript is a lightweight language based on Ruby and Python which transcompiles (compiles from one source language to another) into JavaScript. It provides better syntax avoiding the quirky parts of JavaScript, still retaining the flexibility and beauty of the language.
Article: Cassandra
Contents: Apache Cassandra is a highly scalable, high-performance distributed database designed to handle large amounts of data across many commodity servers,
providing high availability with no single point of failure. It is a type of NoSQL database. Let us first understand what a NoSQL database does.