How to filter empty or NULL names in a QuerySet


I have first_name, last_name & alias (optional) which I need to search for. So, I need a query to give me all the names that have an alias set.

Only if I could do:


So, what is the equivalent to the above?

Best Solution

You could do this:


If you need to exclude null values and empty strings, the preferred way to do so is to chain together the conditions like so:


Chaining these methods together basically checks each condition independently: in the above example, we exclude rows where alias is either null or an empty string, so you get all Name objects that have a not-null, not-empty alias field. The generated SQL would look something like:

SELECT * FROM Name WHERE alias IS NOT NULL AND alias != ""

You can also pass multiple arguments to a single call to exclude, which would ensure that only objects that meet every condition get excluded:

Name.objects.exclude(some_field=True, other_field=True)

Here, rows in which some_field and other_field are true get excluded, so we get all rows where both fields are not true. The generated SQL code would look a little like this:

SELECT * FROM Name WHERE NOT (some_field = TRUE AND other_field = TRUE)

Alternatively, if your logic is more complex than that, you could use Django's Q objects:

from django.db.models import Q
Name.objects.exclude(Q(alias__isnull=True) | Q(alias__exact=''))

For more info see this page and this page in the Django docs.

As an aside: My SQL examples are just an analogy--the actual generated SQL code will probably look different. You'll get a deeper understanding of how Django queries work by actually looking at the SQL they generate.