Hibernate – save image into database

To save an image into database, you need to define a table column as blob data type in MySQL, or equivalent binary type in others database. In Hibernate side, you can declare a byte array variable to store the image data.

Download this example – Hibernate-Image-Example.zip

Here’s an Maven project to use Hibernate to save an image into MySQL ‘avatar‘ table.

1. Table creation

An avatar table creation script in MySQL.

CREATE TABLE  `mkyong`.`avatar` (

2. Maven dependency

Add Hibernate and MySQL dependency.


<project xmlns="http://maven.apache.org/POM/4.0.0" 
        <!-- MySQL database driver -->
	<!-- Hibernate framework -->
	<!-- Hibernate library dependecy start -->
	<!-- Hibernate library dependecy end -->

3. Avatar Model

Create a model class to store the avatar data. The image data type is array of bytes.


package com.mkyong.common;
public class Avatar implements java.io.Serializable {
	private Integer avatarId;
	private byte[] image;
	public Avatar() {
	public Avatar(byte[] image) {
		this.image = image;
	public Integer getAvatarId() {
		return this.avatarId;
	public void setAvatarId(Integer avatarId) {
		this.avatarId = avatarId;
	public byte[] getImage() {
		return this.image;
	public void setImage(byte[] image) {
		this.image = image;

4. Mapping file

Create a Hibernate mapping file for avatar. The data type for image is binary.


<?xml version="1.0"?>
<!DOCTYPE hibernate-mapping PUBLIC "-//Hibernate/Hibernate Mapping DTD 3.0//EN"
    <class name="com.mkyong.common.Avatar" table="avatar" catalog="mkyong">
        <id name="avatarId" type="java.lang.Integer">
            <column name="AVATAR_ID" />
            <generator class="identity" />
        <property name="image" type="binary">
            <column name="IMAGE" not-null="true" />

5. Hibernate configuration file

Hibernate configuration file to define the database connection and Hibernate mapping file.


<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<!DOCTYPE hibernate-configuration PUBLIC
"-//Hibernate/Hibernate Configuration DTD 3.0//EN"
        <property name="hibernate.bytecode.use_reflection_optimizer">false</property>
        <property name="hibernate.connection.driver_class">com.mysql.jdbc.Driver</property>
        <property name="hibernate.connection.password">password</property>
        <property name="hibernate.connection.url">jdbc:mysql://localhost:3306/mkyong</property>
        <property name="hibernate.connection.username">root</property>
        <property name="hibernate.dialect">org.hibernate.dialect.MySQLDialect</property>
        <property name="show_sql">true</property>
        <mapping resource="com/mkyong/common/Avatar.hbm.xml"></mapping>

6. Hibernate utility

A Hibernate utility class to get the database connection.


package com.mkyong.persistence;
import org.hibernate.SessionFactory;
import org.hibernate.cfg.Configuration;
public class HibernateUtil {
    private static final SessionFactory sessionFactory = buildSessionFactory();
    private static SessionFactory buildSessionFactory() {
        try {
            // Create the SessionFactory from hibernate.cfg.xml
            return new Configuration().configure().buildSessionFactory();
        catch (Throwable ex) {
            // Make sure you log the exception, as it might be swallowed
            System.err.println("Initial SessionFactory creation failed." + ex);
            throw new ExceptionInInitializerError(ex);
    public static SessionFactory getSessionFactory() {
        return sessionFactory;
    public static void shutdown() {
    	// Close caches and connection pools

7. Run it

Read a file “C:\\mavan-hibernate-image-mysql.gif” and save it into database, later get it from database and save it into another image file “C:\\test.gif“.

package com.mkyong.common;
import java.io.File;
import java.io.FileInputStream;
import java.io.FileOutputStream;
import org.hibernate.Session;
import com.mkyong.persistence.HibernateUtil;
public class App 
    public static void main( String[] args )
        System.out.println("Hibernate save image into database");
        Session session = HibernateUtil.getSessionFactory().openSession();
        //save image into database
    	File file = new File("C:\\mavan-hibernate-image-mysql.gif");
        byte[] bFile = new byte[(int) file.length()];
        try {
	     FileInputStream fileInputStream = new FileInputStream(file);
	     //convert file into array of bytes
        } catch (Exception e) {
        Avatar avatar = new Avatar();
        //Get image from database
        Avatar avatar2 = (Avatar)session.get(Avatar.class, avatar.getAvatarId());
        byte[] bAvatar = avatar2.getImage();
            FileOutputStream fos = new FileOutputStream("C:\\test.gif"); 
        }catch(Exception e){


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About the Author

Founder of Mkyong.com and HostingCompass.com, love Java and open source stuff. Follow him on Twitter, or befriend him on Facebook or Google Plus. If you like my tutorials, consider make a donation to these charities.


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  • http://www.yasinokumus.com yasin

    Awesome example. Thanks a lot.

  • Mahantesh

    java.sql.SQLException: Data size bigger than max size for this type: 369881
    at oracle.jdbc.dbaccess.DBError.throwSqlException(DBError.java:134)
    at oracle.jdbc.dbaccess.DBError.throwSqlException(DBError.java:179)
    at oracle.jdbc.ttc7.TTCItem.setArrayData(TTCItem.java:95)
    at oracle.jdbc.dbaccess.DBDataSetImpl.setBytesBindItem(DBDataSetImpl.java:2414)
    at oracle.jdbc.driver.OraclePreparedStatement.setItem(OraclePreparedStatement.java:1134)
    at oracle.jdbc.driver.OraclePreparedStatement.setBytes(OraclePreparedStatement.java:2170)
    at org.hibernate.type.AbstractBynaryType.set(AbstractBynaryType.java:43)
    at org.hibernate.type.NullableType.nullSafeSet(NullableType.java:83)
    at org.hibernate.type.NullableType.nullSafeSet(NullableType.java:60)
    at org.hibernate.persister.entity.AbstractEntityPersister.dehydrate(AbstractEntityPersister.java:1932)
    at org.hibernate.persister.entity.AbstractEntityPersister.insert(AbstractEntityPersister.java:2178)
    … 11 more

    I am getting above error when i try to insert text file in the database,and i declared it as Blob datatype in oracle 11g,and i ma using hibernate to insert into database

  • mike

    Exception in thread “main” java.lang.NoClassDefFoundError: javax/transaction/Synchronization
    at org.hibernate.impl.SessionImpl.(SessionImpl.java:213)
    at org.hibernate.impl.SessionFactoryImpl.openSession(SessionFactoryImpl.java:473)
    at org.hibernate.impl.SessionFactoryImpl.openSession(SessionFactoryImpl.java:497)
    at org.hibernate.impl.SessionFactoryImpl.openSession(SessionFactoryImpl.java:505)
    at com.mkyong.common.App.main(App.java:15)

    gives me this error when i try to run app.java

  • http://www.techcubetalk.com Alex

    This is a nice tutorial indeed. Though it is a bad practice to keep images or all other files in database but still proves worthy for some small to midsize project when there is no file server available. Here is another short and simple tutorial we have in our website on BLOB and image handling – http://www.techcubetalk.com/2013/05/workshop-developing-mini-photo-gallery-application-using-struts2-hibernate-mysql-blob-part-1/

  • Kyle Ng

    Thanks Myokong, your jpa/hibernate examples are great – you always show step by step instruction which is very useful. I am working on a hibernate project and your examples really help! Please keep posting more examples! By the way, would be great if you can also provide an example for working with Oracle XML column type (XMLType) using hibernate.

  • amit

    How i can retrive an image using hibernate and display that image on jsf2.0…

  • Kyle

    thank you for this nice tutorial !
    but i see that the part //Get image from database, generate the images stored in DB on a disk directory ,which is redundant ,we have two images .
    is there a better solution to open the image in a jsf page without creating the image on the disk.

  • zakaria

    Hello mkyong,
    i want to save and get a pdf file in data base in stead of image .
    what will be the changes to this tutorial !
    thx for your help

    • http://www.mkyong.com mkyong

      Byte array can support any file type. No change.

      • zakaria

        yes, there is no changes and the tuto works perfectly !
        Mr.Mkyong ,you’re my hero this summer . i work in a project this with jsf-spring-hibernate ,and your tuto concerning these technologies helped me lot . god bless you !
        in my project i’ve student with CV and Motivation letter that i should store in data base ,and consult it from a JSF ( when you consult a student informations ,you should have a link to the cv and LM that you click and it will be opened ).
        i want to do this work using jsf-spring-hibernate . if you could help me ,i’ll be thankful !
        thank you for everything .

  • rajesh

    i have uploaded image to data base and retrieved image from data base.
    Suppose i retrieved object name Customer having following attributes id(long),name(String) , Image(byte array). I have set it in model attribute and got object in View but now how to display this Image in HTML.

    Please help..

  • Biswajit

    Hello mkyong,
    I am getting this error for second part of code.
    If u can please assist me,
    “java.io.FileNotFoundException: C:\test.jpg (Access is denied)”
    even if file is present or file is not present.
    thanks in advance :)

  • Arun

    Hi mykong !!
    very useful example..i m using the same codings with oracle 10 i data base..IDE-net beans, server-appace…but while i run the program..its throwing some errors ..its,

    Nov 27, 2011 2:10:40 PM org.hibernate.util.JDBCExceptionReporter logExceptions
    WARNING: SQL Error: 1461, SQLState: 72000
    Nov 27, 2011 2:10:40 PM org.hibernate.util.JDBCExceptionReporter logExceptions
    SEVERE: ORA-01461: can bind a LONG value only for insert into a LONG column

    so dould u help me out from this problem..thanks in advance…

    • http://www.mkyong.com mkyong

      You try to insert a not “long” value into a table column which only accept “long” value, find out which field and fix it.

    • prakash

      I am also getting the same issue ?

      ORA-01461: can bind a LONG value only for insert into a LONG column.
      As we are inserting binary into long, how to fix this.

  • indonesian_programmer

    as for the mapping, could you give us the annotation way on this ?? :)

    and do i have to use those number 2 ?? Maven dependency ?? I don’t use Maven in my project :)


    • http://www.mkyong.com mkyong

      1. The annotation is rather simple to convert, please refer to Hibernate tutorials

      2. You should use Maven :), nvm if you don’t, just grab the dependencies manually. How to get it? Visit the official website and download one by one, and remember choose the right version l! With Maven, everything is done for you.

  • juragan_top

    fantastic example.. very simple and 100000% work !!

  • Anu


    Do u have an example where i can store and retrieve image from jsf page through database.


  • gerves

    sir I want to upload image to database from any folder not just from c: using hibernate please help

    • http://www.mkyong.com mkyong

      if you know how to upload from “c:” driver, what other problem stopped you to upload from other folder ?

  • Arun.R.U

    Hello Mkyong,
    How are you ? Really useful program, once again i came here for your help, hey do you know how to save file to database from “web application” ? I tried a lot, but its only works if file size is <=2kb. Please, if you know then tell me how to do it.. when retrieving its fine, no problem with retrieving. But when i am going to save then its getting problem.. Its really helpful if its with struts2.. thanks a lot for your useful programs(I did blob and clob programs with standalone applcations).. i always came here to learn new things..

    Thanking You..


  • http://www.yahoo.com Mohamed

    I am getting the Hibernate Exception

    could not insert: [com.igate.image.SampleImage]

    • http://www.mkyong.com mkyong

      Post your caused by exception.

  • dimitrios

    But what if the file and not just an image is beyond the maximum of heap memory ?

  • http://totosuryo.blogspot.com Toto Suryo Cipto

    This code is running well and useful.
    Image file should convert to byte first then save to database..

    Thanks Mykong

  • Artem

    I didn’t test it, but looks helpful. thx

  • Srikanth

    This code is not working…The file is not uploading to dababase and here(Avatar avtar2 = (Avatar)sess.get(Avatar.class, avatar.getAvatarId());) we are getting error can ayone rectify it.

    • http://www.mkyong.com mkyong

      The code is well tested in my machine, may i have your error message?

      • vikas chowdhury

        useful example indeed..actually i am working on swt scribble application and i need to save the content i drawn(freehand )into a database using hibernate..how to achieve this using base64

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