"Dean Householder" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote in message

>I've got a database with lname (lastname), fname (firstname), and nickname.
>What I want to do is search by either first name or last name.  Either way,
>I display the nickname instead of the firstname if it exists.  I have no
>problems on the last name, but when I sort by firstname, the people with
>nicknames that are very different come up at the place where their first
>name (not the displayed name) is.
>For example:
>Adam Smith
>Joe Schmoe
>Bill Somebody
>When Bill Somebody is really William Somebody in the database, his nickname
>is bill and that's what's displayed but he 'bill' shows up in 'williams'
>spot.  Here is my SQL query:
>select * from employees order by fname;
>Should I create an array and sort it there or can I somehow query MySQL to
>sort by nickname only if it exists and then by fname?

SELECT IF(nickname IS NOT NULL AND nickname != "", nickname, fname) AS
fname, lname FROM table ORDER BY fname

if it doesn't sort right, copy the IF(...) to the oRDER BY part

-- Daniel Grace

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