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ORA-00932 occurs when data types are incorrectly used. When faced with ORA-00932, the user will see the following message:

inconsistent datatypes: expected string got string

Try the following suggestions to resolve the issue and avoid seeing the same error.

The Problem

The most common cause of this Oracle error occurs when you attempt to execute an operation of two different data types that are incompatible. Remediating these mismatched data types should be the first step taken.

In addition, it may have occurred because the user tried to perform an operation on a database object that is not intended for normal use. Otherwise, an attempt may have been made to use an undocumented view.

The Solution

Correct the error by changing the data types to ones that are compatible. You can use a function such as TO_NUMBER or TO_CHAR to correct the compatibility error. (You can find the full list of Oracle functions here.)

For example, a user using the LIKE condition with a LONG data type might see this error. The two data types in this case are incompatible. To correct this specific case, the user may choose to not use the LIKE condition against the LONG data type. Otherwise, the user may modify the specific table to change one of the fields to correct any compatibility issues. The user might also choose to write a custom function to convert a data type into another.

If you are experiencing ORA-00932 with BLOB or CLOB data types, you should create the NLS_LENGTH_SYMANTICS=BYTE and change the NLS_LENGTH_SYMANTICS to CHAR. Then de-install and install the XDB again.

Note that you may experience a bug which throws an error during dynamic select statements. This has been experienced in PL/SQL versions on multiple platforms. You will experience very similar problems when trying to use a dynamic select statement. The statement with the native dynamic SQL causes ORA-00932 where the number of items has to be the same in the SELECT and INTO lists. To avoid this bug, make sure the SELECT statement has an equal number of variables and columns. Note that ORA-00932 will not occur in relation to this bug in 11.x versions. Look for solutions to bug 4381035 as this can sometimes be related.

Looking Forward

To avoid getting this error in the future, make sure that data types are compatible against one another. If you continue to have trouble with ORA-00932, contact your database administrator or a licensed Oracle consultant. Be sure to check the consultant’s level of experience and expertise. Make sure they possess the correct credentials to meet your Oracle needs.