Open Database Connectivity
Open Database Connectivity, commonly ODBC, is an open specification for providing application developers with a predictable API with which to access Data Sources. An ODBC engine needs drivers to be able to interact with databases.
- 1 ODBC engines
- 2 Drivers
- 3 Databases
You have two options to chose from: unixODBC and iODBC. Apparently unixODBC is more widely supported. This document shows how to set up unixODBC. First to access your database on your localhost and then extends the steps to configure MySQL to allow remote access through ODBC.
Additionally you can choose from various Devart ODBC drivers for SQL Server, Oracle, MySQL, SQLite, Firebird, PostgreSQL, Interbase.
Install the package.
Driver are declared in
/etc/odbcinst.ini, and connections in
/etc/odbc.ini. More instruction at each driver section.
FreeTDS is a set of libraries for Unix and Linux that allows your programs to natively talk to Microsoft SQL Server and Sybase databases. Technically speaking, FreeTDS is an open source implementation of the TDS (Tabular Data Stream) protocol used by these databases for their own clients.
Install the package.
[FreeTDS] Driver = /usr/lib/libtdsodbc.so UsageCount = 1
Myodbc is ODBC driver/connector for mariadb.
Install theAUR package.
odbcinst.ini, which lists all installed drivers.
[MySQL] Description = ODBC Driver for MySQL Driver = /usr/lib/libmyodbc.so Setup = /usr/lib/libodbcmyS.so FileUsage = 1
Next we need to create a symlink for
libmyodbc.so. To do this we need to go to
/usr/lib/ and set up a symlink to
# cd /usr/lib/ # ln -s ./libmyodbc5w.so ./libmyodbc.so
Microsoft SQL Server 2000
[server_name] Driver = FreeTDS #Trace = Yes #TraceFile = /tmp/odbc Servername = server_name Database = database_name
[server_name] host = 192.168.0.2 # Host name or IP address. port = 1433 # Default port. tds version = 7.1 client charset = UTF-8
SQL Server ODBC driver connection strings and configuration guide
Set up your data sources in
/etc/odbc.ini (system wide) or
~/.odbc (current user). If a data source is defined in both of these files, the one in your home directory take precedence.
[MySQL-test] Description = MySQL database test Driver = MySQL Server = localhost Database = test Port = 3306 Socket = /var/run/mysqld/mysqld.sock Option = Stmt =
MariaDB ODBC driver connection strings and configuration guide
Create a test database
Create a new database "test". You can use one of the MySQL front-ends such as, or the command-line mysqladmin command:
$ mysqladmin -h localhost -u root -p create test
Testing the ODBC
To test the ODBC connection
$ isql MySQL-test
If the connection is established, you will see
+---------------------------------------+ | Connected! | | | | sql-statement | | help [tablename] | | quit | | | +---------------------------------------+ SQL>
If you have a problem connecting then check the error message by running
$ isql MySQL-test -v
A couple useful websites
This website got me going on ODBC with MySQL but left out some things that were necessary for me to get isql up and running. However this might be a good reference for the OpenOffice part.
To work around error messages this URL proved helpful so here it is as well.
Virtuoso / SPARQL
[ODBC Data Sources] VOS = Virtuoso [VOS] Driver = virtuoso-odbc Description = Virtuoso Open-Source Edition Address = localhost:1111
[virtuoso-odbc] Driver = /usr/lib/virtodbc.so
Opening a connection using the default credentials (username: "dba", password: "dba"):
$ isql VOS dba dba