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Multiplying the rows is invalid for several reasons: Many times, the rows examined are an approximation (based on statistics, not accurate), good for query plan selection, but not for performance calculation The total number of rows examined on a nested loop join (A, B) is not rows_examined_on_table_A * rows_examined_on_table_B, but ...


The link provided by Martin Smith to an existing SO question provided me with the answer: The main restrictions are that foreign key relationships must be based on a single key to contribute to the simplification process

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