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GetDescendant (Database Engine)

Returns a child node of the parent.

-- Transact-SQL syntax
parent.GetDescendant ( child1 , child2 ) 
-- CLR syntax
SqlHierarchyId GetDescendant ( SqlHierarchyId child1 , SqlHierarchyId child2 ) 

child1

NULL or the hierarchyid of a child of the current node.

child2

NULL or the hierarchyid of a child of the current node.

SQL Server return type: hierarchyid

CLR return type: SqlHierarchyId

Returns one child node that is a descendant of the parent.

  • If parent is NULL, returns NULL.

  • If parent is not NULL, and both child1 and child2 are NULL, returns a child of parent.

  • If parent and child1 are not NULL, and child2 is NULL, returns a child of parent greater than child1.

  • If parent and child2 are not NULL and child1 is NULL, returns a child of parent less than child2.

  • If parent, child1, and child2 are not NULL, returns a child of parent greater than child1 and less than child2.

  • If child1 is not NULL and not a child of parent, an exception is raised.

  • If child2 is not NULL and not a child of parent, an exception is raised.

  • If child1 >= child2, an exception is raised.

GetDescendant is deterministic. Therefore, if GetDescendant is called with the same inputs, it will always produce the same output. However, the exact identity of the child produced can vary depending upon its relationship to the other nodes, as demonstrated in example C.

A. Inserting a row as the least descendant node

A new employee is hired, reporting to an existing employee at node /3/1/. Execute the following code to insert the new row by using the GetDescendant method without arguments to specify the new rows node as /3/1/1/:

DECLARE @Manager hierarchyid 
SELECT @Manager = CAST('/3/1/' AS hierarchyid)

INSERT HumanResources.EmployeeDemo (OrgNode, LoginID, Title, HireDate)
VALUES
(@Manager.GetDescendant(NULL, NULL),
'adventure-works\FirstNewEmployee', 'Application Intern', '3/11/07') ;

B. Inserting a row as a greater descendant node

Another new employee is hired, reporting to the same manager as in example A. Execute the following code to insert the new row by using the GetDescendant method using the child 1 argument to specify that the node of the new row will follow the node in example A, becoming /3/1/2/:

DECLARE @Manager hierarchyid, @Child1 hierarchyid

SELECT @Manager = CAST('/3/1/' AS hierarchyid)
SELECT @Child1 = CAST('/3/1/1/' AS hierarchyid)

INSERT HumanResources.EmployeeDemo (OrgNode, LoginID, Title, HireDate)
VALUES
(@Manager.GetDescendant(@Child1, NULL),
'adventure-works\SecondNewEmployee', 'Application Intern', '3/11/07') ;

C. Inserting a row between two existing nodes

A third employee is hired, reporting to the same manager as in example A. This example inserts the new row to a node greater than the FirstNewEmployee in example A, and less than the SecondNewEmployee in example B. Execute the following code by using the GetDescendant method. Use both the child1 argument and the child2 argument to specify that the node of the new row will become node /3/1/1.1/:

DECLARE @Manager hierarchyid, @Child1 hierarchyid, @Child2 hierarchyid

SELECT @Manager = CAST('/3/1/' AS hierarchyid)
SELECT @Child1 = CAST('/3/1/1/' AS hierarchyid)
SELECT @Child2 = CAST('/3/1/2/' AS hierarchyid)

INSERT HumanResources.EmployeeDemo (OrgNode, LoginID, Title, HireDate)
VALUES
(@Manager.GetDescendant(@Child1, @Child2),
'adventure-works\ThirdNewEmployee', 'Application Intern', '3/11/07') ;

After completing examples A, B, and C, the nodes added to the table will be peers with the following hierarchyid values:

/3/1/1/

/3/1/1.1/

/3/1/2/

Node /3/1/1.1/ is greater than node /3/1/1/ but at the same level in the hierarchy.

D. Scalar examples

SQL Server supports arbitrary insertions and deletions of any hierarchyid nodes. By using GetDescendant(), it is always possible to generate a node between any two hierarchyid nodes. Execute the following code to generate sample nodes using GetDescendant:

DECLARE @h hierarchyid = hierarchyid::GetRoot()
DECLARE @c hierarchyid = @h.GetDescendant(NULL, NULL)
SELECT @c.ToString()
DECLARE @c2 hierarchyid = @h.GetDescendant(@c, NULL)
SELECT @c2.ToString()
SET @c2 = @h.GetDescendant(@c, @c2)
SELECT @c2.ToString()
SET @c = @h.GetDescendant(@c, @c2)
SELECT @c.ToString()
SET @c2 = @h.GetDescendant(@c, @c2)
SELECT @c2.ToString()

E. CLR example

The following code snippet calls the GetDescendant() method:

SqlHierarchyId parent, child1, child2;
parent = SqlHierarchyId.GetRoot();
child1 = parent.GetDescendant(SqlHierarchyId.Null, SqlHierarchyId.Null);
child2 = parent.GetDescendant(child1, SqlHierarchyId.Null);
Console.Write(parent.GetDescendant(child1, child2).ToString());
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