1. Overview

Spring Data JPA queries, by default, are case-sensitive. In other words, the field value comparisons are case-sensitive.

In this tutorial, we’ll explore how to quickly create a case insensitive query in a Spring Data JPA repository.

2. Dependencies

Firstly, let’s make sure we have Spring Data and H2 database dependencies in our pom.xml:


The latest versions of these Spring Boot Starter JPA and H2 are available on Maven Central.

3. Initial Setup

Let’s say we have a Passenger entity with id, firstName, and lastName attributes:

class Passenger {
    @Column(nullable = false)
    private Long id;
    @Basic(optional = false)
    @Column(nullable = false)
    private String firstName;
    @Basic(optional = false)
    @Column(nullable = false)
    private String lastName;
    // constructor, static factory, getters, setters

Also, let’s prepare our test class by populating the database with some sample Passenger data:

public class PassengerRepositoryIntegrationTest {

    private EntityManager entityManager;
    private PassengerRepository repository;

    public void before() {
        entityManager.persist(Passenger.from("Jill", "Smith"));
        entityManager.persist(Passenger.from("Eve", "Jackson"));
        entityManager.persist(Passenger.from("Fred", "Bloggs"));
        entityManager.persist(Passenger.from("Ricki", "Bobbie"));
        entityManager.persist(Passenger.from("Siya", "Kolisi"));

4. IgnoreCase for Case Insensitive Queries

Now, suppose we want to perform a case-insensitive search to find all passengers with a given firstName.

To do so, we’ll define our PassengerRepository as:

public interface PassengerRepository extends JpaRepository<Passenger, Long> {
    List<Passenger> findByFirstNameIgnoreCase(String firstName);

Here, the IgnoreCase keyword ensures that the query matches are case insensitive.

We can also test that out with the help of a JUnit test:

public void givenPassengers_whenMatchingIgnoreCase_thenExpectedReturned() {
    Passenger jill = Passenger.from("Jill", "Smith");
    Passenger eve = Passenger.from("Eve", "Jackson");
    Passenger fred = Passenger.from("Fred", "Bloggs");
    Passenger siya = Passenger.from("Siya", "Kolisi");
    Passenger ricki = Passenger.from("Ricki", "Bobbie");

    List<Passenger> passengers = repository.findByFirstNameIgnoreCase("FrED");

    assertThat(passengers, contains(fred));
    assertThat(passengers, not(contains(eve)));
    assertThat(passengers, not(contains(siya)));
    assertThat(passengers, not(contains(jill)));
    assertThat(passengers, not(contains(ricki)));

Despite having passed “FrED” as the argument, our returned list of passengers contains a Passenger with the firstName as “Fred”. Clearly, with the help of the IgnoreCase keyword, we have achieved a case insensitive match.

5. Conclusion

In this quick tutorial, we learned how to create a case insensitive query in a Spring Data repository.

Finally, code examples are available over on GitHub.

Course – LSD (cat=Persistence)

Get started with Spring Data JPA through the reference Learn Spring Data JPA course:

res – Persistence (eBook) (cat=Persistence)
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