Thursday, 18 July 2013

User Defined Function to Strip HTML – Parse HTML – No Regular Expression from the data using SQL SERVER

Today I came across a problem where Column in a SQL server database contained Data with HTML tags, while generating a idea how can i create search from the whole site's content that is inserted into database using editor. I saw if i search the content as it is which contains the HTML tags as well, it would not be a good way to do this thing. Then i decided to remove the HTML tags from the data. And wrote below code to do that for me:

ALTER FUNCTION [dbo].[udf_StripHTML]
(
@HTMLText varchar(MAX)
)
RETURNS varchar(MAX)
AS
BEGIN
DECLARE @Start  int
DECLARE @End    int
DECLARE @Length int



-- Replace the HTML entity & with the '&' character (this needs to be done first, as
-- '&' might be double encoded as '&')
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('&', @HTMLText)
SET @End = @Start + 4
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1

WHILE (@Start > 0 AND @End > 0 AND @Length > 0) BEGIN
SET @HTMLText = STUFF(@HTMLText, @Start, @Length, '&')
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('&', @HTMLText)
SET @End = @Start + 4
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1
END

-- Replace the HTML entity &lt; with the '<' character
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('&lt;', @HTMLText)
SET @End = @Start + 3
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1

WHILE (@Start > 0 AND @End > 0 AND @Length > 0) BEGIN
SET @HTMLText = STUFF(@HTMLText, @Start, @Length, '<')
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('&lt;', @HTMLText)
SET @End = @Start + 3
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1
END

-- Replace the HTML entity &gt; with the '>' character
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('&gt;', @HTMLText)
SET @End = @Start + 3
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1

WHILE (@Start > 0 AND @End > 0 AND @Length > 0) BEGIN
SET @HTMLText = STUFF(@HTMLText, @Start, @Length, '>')
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('&gt;', @HTMLText)
SET @End = @Start + 3
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1
END

-- Replace the HTML entity &amp; with the '&' character
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('&amp;amp;', @HTMLText)
SET @End = @Start + 4
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1

WHILE (@Start > 0 AND @End > 0 AND @Length > 0) BEGIN
SET @HTMLText = STUFF(@HTMLText, @Start, @Length, '&')
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('&amp;amp;', @HTMLText)
SET @End = @Start + 4
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1
END

-- Replace the HTML entity &nbsp; with the ' ' character
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('&nbsp;', @HTMLText)
SET @End = @Start + 5
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1

WHILE (@Start > 0 AND @End > 0 AND @Length > 0) BEGIN
SET @HTMLText = STUFF(@HTMLText, @Start, @Length, ' ')
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('&nbsp;', @HTMLText)
SET @End = @Start + 5
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1
END

-- Replace any <br> tags with a newline
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('<br>', @HTMLText)
SET @End = @Start + 3
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1

WHILE (@Start > 0 AND @End > 0 AND @Length > 0) BEGIN
SET @HTMLText = STUFF(@HTMLText, @Start, @Length, CHAR(13) + CHAR(10))
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('<br>', @HTMLText)
SET @End = @Start + 3
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1
END

-- Replace any <br/> tags with a newline
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('<br/>', @HTMLText)
SET @End = @Start + 4
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1

WHILE (@Start > 0 AND @End > 0 AND @Length > 0) BEGIN
SET @HTMLText = STUFF(@HTMLText, @Start, @Length, 'CHAR(13) + CHAR(10)')
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('<br/>', @HTMLText)
SET @End = @Start + 4
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1
END

-- Replace any <br /> tags with a newline
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('<br />', @HTMLText)
SET @End = @Start + 5
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1

WHILE (@Start > 0 AND @End > 0 AND @Length > 0) BEGIN
SET @HTMLText = STUFF(@HTMLText, @Start, @Length, 'CHAR(13) + CHAR(10)')
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('<br />', @HTMLText)
SET @End = @Start + 5
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1
END

-- Remove anything between <whatever> tags
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('<', @HTMLText)
SET @End = CHARINDEX('>', @HTMLText, CHARINDEX('<', @HTMLText))
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1

WHILE (@Start > 0 AND @End > 0 AND @Length > 0) BEGIN
SET @HTMLText = STUFF(@HTMLText, @Start, @Length, '')
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('<', @HTMLText)
SET @End = CHARINDEX('>', @HTMLText, CHARINDEX('<', @HTMLText))
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1
END

-- Replace the HTML entity --> with the ' ' character
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('-->', @HTMLText)
SET @End = @Start + 4
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1

WHILE (@Start > 0 AND @End > 0 AND @Length > 0) BEGIN
SET @HTMLText = STUFF(@HTMLText, @Start, @Length, '')
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('-->', @HTMLText)
SET @End = @Start + 4
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1
END

-- Replace the HTML entity --> with the ' ' character
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('->', @HTMLText)
SET @End = @Start + 3
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1

WHILE (@Start > 0 AND @End > 0 AND @Length > 0) BEGIN
SET @HTMLText = STUFF(@HTMLText, @Start, @Length, '')
SET @Start = CHARINDEX('->', @HTMLText)
SET @End = @Start + 3
SET @Length = (@End - @Start) + 1
END


RETURN LTRIM(RTRIM(@HTMLText))

END

I got the idea from the Best way to strip html tags from a string in sql-server, and then i had modified as i wanted it.
That's All. We are ready with the recipe to remove HTML tags from a string using USER DEFINED FUNCTION IN SQL SERVER.

One thing more the above UDF will work with SQL SERVER 2005 and above as below   versions does not have varchar(Max) datatype. If you want to use this function   with the 2000 or below versions just replace the varchar(max) with varchar(4000).
Hope this will help you somehow.