Sybase ASE to PostgreSQL Migration

SQLines tools help you transfer data, convert database schema (DDL), views, stored procedures, functions, triggers, queries and SQL scripts from SAP Sybase Adaptive Server Enterprise (Sybase ASE) to PostgreSQL.


  • Sybase Adaptive Server Enterprise 16, 15, 12.x and 11.x
  • PostgreSQL 15.x, 14.x, 13.x, 12.x, 11.x, 10.x and 9.x

See also Sybase SQL Anywhere to PostgreSQL Migration.

Sybase ASE to PostgreSQL Migration Tools

Migration Reference

Technical information on migration from Sybase ASE to PostgreSQL:

SQL Language Elements

Converting SQL language elements:

Sybase ASE PostgreSQL
1 string1 + string2 String concatenation string1 || string2
2 exp != NULL Non SQL-standard check for NOT NULL exp IS NOT NULL
exp <> NULL
exp = NULL Non SQL-standard check for NULL exp IS NULL
3 @@ROWCOUNT Get the number of affected rows ROW_COUNT

Data Types

Converting data types:

Sybase ASE PostgreSQL
1 BIGDATETIME Date and time with fraction TIMESTAMP
2 BIGINT 64-bit integer BIGINT
3 BIGTIME Time (Hour, minute, second and fraction) TIME
4 BINARY(n) Fixed-length binary data, 1 ⇐ npagesize BYTEA
5 BIT 0 or 1; NULL is not allowed BOOLEAN
6 CHAR(n), CHARACTER(n) Fixed-length string CHAR(n), CHARACTER(n)
7 DATE Date (year, month and day) DATE
8 DATETIME Date and time with fraction TIMESTAMP
9 DECIMAL(p,s), DEC(p,s) Fixed-point number DECIMAL(p,s), DEC(p,s)
10 DOUBLE PRECISION Double-precision floating-point number DOUBLE PRECISION
11 FLOAT(p) Floating-point number DOUBLE PRECISION
12 IMAGE Variable-length binary data, ⇐ 2G BYTEA
13 INT, INTEGER 32-bit integer INT, INTEGER
14 MONEY 64-bit currency amount MONEY
15 NCHAR(n) Fixed-length national character string CHAR(n)
16 NUMERIC(p,s) Fixed-point number NUMERIC(p,s)
17 NVARCHAR(n) Variable-length national character string VARCHAR(n)
18 REAL Single-precision floating-point number REAL
20 SMALLINT 16-bit integer SMALLINT
21 SMALLMONEY 32-bit currency amount MONEY
22 TEXT Variable-length character data, ⇐ 2G TEXT
23 TIME Time (Hour, minute, second and fraction) TIME
24 TINYINT 8-bit unsigned integer, 0 to 255 SMALLINT
25 UNICHAR(n) Fixed-length Unicode string CHAR(n)
26 UNITEXT Variable-length Unicode data, ⇐ 1G TEXT
27 UNIVARCHAR(n) Variable-length Unicode string VARCHAR(n)
28 UNSIGNED BIGINT 64-bit unsigned integer NUMERIC(20)
29 UNSIGNED INT 32-bit unsigned integer NUMERIC(10)
30 UNSIGNED SMALLINT 16-bit unsigned integer NUMERIC(5)
31 VARBINARY(n) Variable-length binary string BYTEA
32 VARCHAR(n) Variable-length string VARCHAR(n)

Built-in SQL Functions

Converting string functions:

Sybase ASE PostgreSQL
1 CHAR_LENGTH(string) Number of characters in string CHAR_LENGTH(string)
2 CHARINDEX(substring, string) Get substring position in string POSITION(substring IN string)
3 CONVERT(VARCHAR, datetime, style) Convert datetime to string TO_CHAR(datetime, format)
4 LEN(string) Length in characters LENGTH(string)
5 SUBSTRING(string, start, length) Return substring SUBSTRING(string, start, length)

Converting datetime functions:

Sybase ASE PostgreSQL
1 CONVERT(DATETIME, expr, style) Converts expr to datetime TO_TIMESTAMP(expr, format)
2 CONVERT(TIME, expr) Converts expr to TIME CAST(expr AS TIME)
3 DATEADD(dd, int, datetime) Add days to datetime datetime + INTERVAL 'int DAY'
DATEADD(dd, exp, datetime) datetime + exp * INTERVAL '1 DAY'
4 DATENAME(unit, datetime) Extract unit from datetime TO_CHAR(datetime, format)
5 DAY(datetime) Get the day of datetime EXTRACT(DAY FROM datetime)
6 GETDATE() Get the current date and time NOW()

Numeric functions:

Sybase ASE PostgreSQL
1 CONVERT(BIGINT, exp) Convert to integer CAST(exp AS BIGINT)
2 CONVERT(NUMERIC(p,s), exp) Convert to number CAST(exp AS NUMERIC(p,s))

NULL handling functions:

Sybase ASE PostgreSQL
1 ISNULL(exp, replacement) Replace NULL with the specified value COALESCE(exp, replacement)

SELECT Statement

Converting SQL queries:

Sybase ASE PostgreSQL
1 SELECT TOP n … FROM … Select n rows only SELECT … FROM … LIMIT n
2 SELECT … INTO #tmp_table Create a temporary table using SELECT SELECT … INTO TEMPORARY tmp_table
3 SELECT alias = expr Non-standard column alias form SELECT expr alias

DELETE Statement

Converting DELETE statement:

Sybase ASE PostgreSQL
1 DELETE [FROM] tab Delete rows DELETE FROM tab FROM keyword is required


Converting CREATE TABLE statement keywords and clauses:

Sybase ASE PostgreSQL
1 IDENTITY(start, increment) Identity column GENERATED ALWAYS AS IDENTITY
(START WITH start INCREMENT BY increment)
2 IDENTITY can be defined on DECIMAL/NUMERIC columns Integer columns must be used

Temporary tables:

Sybase ASE PostgreSQL
1 CREATE TABLE #name Temporary table name starts with # CREATE TEMPORARY TABLE name


Converting stored procedures from Sybase ASE to PostgreSQL:

Sybase ASE PostgreSQL
2 @param [AS] datatype = default OUT | OUTPUT p_param IN | INOUT datatype = default
3 Optional () for procedure parameters () required
4 AS Changed AS $$
5 Declarations inside BEGIN block DECLARE block is between AS and BEGIN clauses
6 END End of procedure block END; $$ LANGUAGE plpgsql;

Transact-SQL Statements

Converting procedural Transact-SQL statements used in stored procedures, functions and triggers from Sybase ASE to PostgreSQL:

Variable declaration and assignment:

Sybase ASE PostgreSQL
1 DECLARE @var [AS] datatype(len) [= default] Variable declaration var datatype(len) [:= default];

Flow-of-control statements:

Sybase ASE PostgreSQL
1 IF condition BEGIN … END IF statement IF condition THEN … END IF;
2 WHILE condition BEGIN … END WHILE loop WHILE condition LOOP … END LOOP;

Cursors operations and attributes:

Sybase ASE PostgreSQL
1 CLOSE cur
Close a cursor CLOSE cur;
2 @@SQLSTATUS = 0 Fetch was successful FOUND

Stored procedure calls:

Sybase ASE PostgreSQL
1 EXEC sp_name @param1 = value1,… Execute a procedure CALL sp_name(p_param1 => value1,…)

System Procedures

Converting system stored procedures from Sybase ASE to PostgreSQL:

Sybase ASE PostgreSQL
1 sp_addtype name, "basetype(len)",
"not null"
Create a user-defined type CREATE DOMAIN name AS basetype(len)
2 sp_bindrule name, "table.column" Assign a rule to a table column ALTER TABLE table ADD CHECK rule_condition

SQL Statements

Converting SQL statements from Sybase ASE to PostgreSQL:

Sybase ASE PostgreSQL
1 CREATE RULE name AS condition Create a domain of acceptable values Converted to a CHECK constraint
2 USE name Change the database SET SCHEMA 'name' If databases are mapped to schemas