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Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Database Support for Non-Image MIME-type Objects

After recently having to implement a custom Project and Document management ASP.NET solution that required users to upload files to the webserver, I have come to a question which largely puzzles me.

Why is it that most DB systems (at least those I've used) only support Image related MIME-type objects in their 'BLOB' fields (typically MySQL). AFAIK, Microsoft Access is the only database system that you can upload MIME-type objects (like PDF's, Word Documents, etc) into the database and then retrieve the actual file from the database in it's original format (by setting the database field property as an OLE Object field).

After trying the same in MySQL, I can surely upload files, but when trying to retrieve the file data, I get gibberish as an output. Maybe it's something to do with the octet-stream into the database. Any ideas ?

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