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Conversion of Image type to Text

user46137 Published in September 19, 2018, 6:43 pm

I'm having some trouble converting the below Image data type to text;


I have tried casting as varbinary and then casting that to nvarchar, but get what looks like Unicode characters;

select top 1 cast(cast(body as varbinary(max)) as nvarchar(max)) from dbo.messagedata

How can I convert the above Image data into readable text?

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    What do you mean by readable text? The point is that the data is binary and not readable by a human. What text would you expect an image to take? I suspect that isn't really what you want. What are you trying to accomplish? BTW, the image datatype has been deprecated in favor of varbinary(max) for over a decade now. – Sean Lange Nov 13 '17 at 15:01
  • There is readable text, encoded behind that binary data. I know that for a fact. The database I am dealing is well over a decade old. I know Image type is depreciated, but I didn't make the database. – Sam Nov 13 '17 at 15:05
  • 1
    Really??? Readable to turn it into an image perhaps but it is not going to just start reading like text. What you are seeing is a text representation of the binary data. The data you posted is exactly what I would expect for the text representation of a binary. Are you trying to display this as an image in some application? – Sean Lange Nov 13 '17 at 15:08
  • Managed to sort it myself anyway. Turns out the data is GZip compressed. I decompressed the bytes in C# and managed to get the text back. – Sam Nov 13 '17 at 15:09

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