Adding A 3rd Party JDBC Driver

Adding A 3rd Party JDBC Driver


Matillion ETL’s Database Query orchestration component uses JDBC to query relational databases that are acting as data sources for your application.

A number of commonly-used JDBC drivers are provided with Matillion ETL, and can be used out of the box. Some others, notably Oracle, Teradata, DB2 and MySQL, have licensing restrictions that require you to upload an individual copy of the JDBC driver into Matillion ETL. This can be done by clicking AdminManage Database Drivers in the top right of the Matillion ETL interface. Many other JDBC drivers can be used with Matillion ETL, with a couple of extra steps that are described in this document.

Downloading your JDBC driver

Acquire a suitable JDBC driver for your source database. This will be in the form of one or more .jar files that you can download. The download package may actually be a .zip or .tgz file, in which case you will need to un-zip or decompress it to extract the individual .jar files.

RDBMS vendors often offer many different drivers, in which case you should look for:

  • JDBC Type 4, sometimes known as “Pure Java” or “Direct to Database”, as other types of driver require additional client software and will not work
  • Compatible with Java 7, sometimes known as JDBC version 4, as some drivers are simply provided in the form of a single .jar file, which is ideal

Please Note

  • Some drivers are implemented as multiple .jar files, and you will need to download all of them to use the driver.
  • If a driver has further non-JDBC dependencies, such as logging libraries, the RDBMS vendor should provide documentation for these cases. Users are also required to download all of the dependency .jar files before continuing.
  • The RDBMS vendor should also provide documentation on some of the main features of the driver, such as the Java class name, and the URL format. You will need this information in order to configure Matillion ETL.

Upload the JAR files into Matillion ETL

  1. Once Matillion has restarted, click AdminManage Database Drivers. This should open a dialog which allows .jar files to be uploaed for all of the JDBC drivers which have the allowUpload property set to true.

  2. Upload the .jar file(s) one at a time, remembering to include any dependency .jar files.

  3. Once all the .jar files are uploaded, everything required to begin to use the new JDBC driver is in place.

Configuring Matillion ETL

The list of JDBC drivers that you can see in the Database Type property of the Database Query component is governed by a single configuration file.

  1. To add a new entry to this list, you will need to log onto the running Matillion ETL instance and edit the file. Use an SSH client to connect to the instance, acces the root user, and locate the file entitled /usr/share/emerald/WEB-INF/classes/

    sudo su -
    cd /usr/share/emerald/WEB-INF/classes
  2. The file is made up of a single JSON array, with one entry per supported database. Carefully add a new entry, using any text editor, remembering to end the new entry with a comma if it’s partway down the list. Follow the syntax of one of the existing entries and set values for:

    • name – the display name
    • driver – the Java class name of the driver, which should be in the vendor’s documentation
    • url – a sample URL, used for documentation only
    • allowUpload – always set this to true
    • fetchSize – set this to 500 initially, but the value can be tuned
    • limit – this is a string which Matillion uses internally to create an SQL command for sampling, accepted values include:
      • fetch-first-n – uses a JDBC loop (this is the best default option)
      • limit-inline – uses the LIMIT keyword
      • limit-outer – uses LIMIT outside a nested SELECT
      • rownum – uses a ROWNUM rowstop (Oracle style)
      • top-n – uses the TOP keyword (SQL Server style)
  3. Depending on the driver, additional properties may also be set including:

    • autocommit – normally true, but can be set to false
    • defaultProperties – another JSON array with properties that are meaningful to the driver in use
  4. Once you have finished editing the file, it’s worth checking that the JSON syntax is still:

    cat | jq "."

    Please Note

    The command will fail with an error message if the JSON is invalid. Note that syntax errors in the file will prevent Matillion from re-starting.

Restart Matillion

After editing the file, the Matillion ETL instance must be restarted. Wait a few minutes while the new configuration comes into effect.

Test the Database Query component

  1. Drag a Database Query component onto an Orchestration job, and open its Database Type dialog box. The new driver should be available to select.
  2. The example URL should help you to configure the correct Connection URL for your database, normally by configuring the host, port and database name.
  3. The SQL syntax of the SQL Query statement is in the dialect of your new source database.


There are three common issues often caused by incorrect driver configuration:

  • The Database Query component won’t accept a selection, rather reverting back to the default setting
  • The component complains that “Parameters contain errors”
  • Errors occur during execution of the component, even though the SQL is valid
  • If an "Unable to find driver of database type [x]" error is displayed, ensure the URL in the file is a valid connection string pattern – for example, using 1234 for a placeholder port number instead of <port>

If these errors occur, get hold of the Matillion ETL Server Log and contact support. The Server Log is a file called catalina.out, and can be obtained from the Matillion ETL admin screen via More / Download Server Log.