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Question and Answer

Tom Kyte

Thanks for the question, fdgf.

Asked: February 01, 2013 - 10:46 pm UTC

Answered by: Tom Kyte - Last updated: February 06, 2013 - 2:58 pm UTC

Category: Developer - Version: 11.2.0

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You Asked

How can i get the row count of a cursor

and we said...

The only way to get a count of how many rows a cursor will return is to actually fetch them.

Most of the time, a result set is not generated until you actually fetch from it - and even then, it isn't copied somewhere to be fetched from

for example:

select * from one_billion_row_table;

will prepare immediately - no work is done. the first fetch will return instantly - we just get enough data to give back to you - we don't read all one billion rows. We don't know the row count until we get there ourselves!

you could add

count(*) over () cnt

to your select list, then you would have a count to fetch and would know on the first fetch - but i STRONGLY RECOMMEND NOT DOING THAT - it will make every query much slower - much much slower - as we will have to build the entire result set before the first row can be processed by you.

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Apex Interactive Reports

February 06, 2013 - 3:22 pm UTC

Reviewer: Tony from WA

Interestingly enough the count(*) over () technique is added to queries in Application Express in the background. This is done so that the apex engine can return the message "this query returns more than X rows" where X is your defined max reporting rows limit (i.e. 10,000 rows).

It may not be an ideal situation, but it does provide some useful functionality.

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