we've faced the situation when the operation WHERE UPPER(columnName) IN ('PRED1', 'PRED2', 'PRED3') works very bad. If I remove UPPER then it performs good. I've tried to play with projections and could not get it working properly. How can I solve that issue (maybe the problem is not in projection...) I've tried following code:

CREATE TABLE public.ProjectionsTest (
id int primary key,
a varchar(2000)

INSERT INTO public.ProjectionsTest values (1,'a');
INSERT INTO public.ProjectionsTest values (2,'b');
INSERT INTO public.ProjectionsTest values (3,'c');
INSERT INTO public.ProjectionsTest values (4,'d');
INSERT INTO public.ProjectionsTest values (5,'e');

SELECT ANALYZE_STATISTICS('public.ProjectionsTest');
SELECT REFRESH('public.ProjectionsTest');

CREATE PROJECTION public.ProjectionsTest_lower_ob
        lower(a) a
 FROM public.ProjectionsTest
 ORDER BY lower(a), id

explain SELECT id, lower(a) FROM public.ProjectionsTest WHERE lower(a) = 'a' ORDER BY a, id;

DROP PROJECTION public.ProjectionsTest_lower_ob;
DROP TABLE  public.ProjectionsTest;

And I am getting following result (the projection "public.ProjectionsTest_lower_ob" is not used):


explain SELECT id, lower(a) FROM public.ProjectionsTest WHERE lower(a) = 'a' ORDER BY a, id

Access Path:
+-SORT [Cost: 36, Rows: 4] (PATH ID: 1)
| Order: ProjectionsTest.a ASC, ProjectionsTest.id ASC
| +---> STORAGE ACCESS for ProjectionsTest [Cost: 35, Rows: 4] (PATH ID: 2)
| | Projection: public.ProjectionsTest_super
| | Materialize: ProjectionsTest.a, ProjectionsTest.id
| | Filter: (lower(ProjectionsTest.a) = 'a')
  • No experience on columnstore or vertica. But basic rule in databases is that you should not use function(column) in where clause. Instead use WHERE column = uppper('input'), if possible: this means that your data in should be all upper or all lower in database and then use upper/lower to search value – simplexio Oct 6 '16 at 13:07
  • @simplexio thanks for your comment. You are right, however in that case you are not able to return the data in the same case as it was originally inserted. I know that in row stored dbs you can use index by that function but Vertica does not have indexes – Dmitrij Kultasev Oct 6 '16 at 14:20
  • I don't think Vertica can do a query rewrite in such case; you'll need to query the new projection instead of the anchor table to take advantage of the calculated column. – mustaccio Oct 6 '16 at 14:51

Here is small example of how you can improve the query speed.

One way i do it is by using bucket columns based on default value at load time.(this can make your load slower thou).

see sample code

drop table test_tbl;
        id INT,
        name VARCHAR(20),
        bkt_col int default(
            WHEN name=upper(name)
            THEN 1
            WHEN name!=upper(name)
            THEN 0

Create the projection to attend you predicate, segmented on replicated is up to you table type/size

CREATE PROJECTION public.test_tbl 
 SELECT test_tbl.id,
 FROM public.test_tbl
 ORDER BY test_tbl.bkt_col,
SEGMENTED BY hash(test_tbl.bkt_col, test_tbl.id, test_tbl.name) ALL NODES KSAFE 1;

Insert some data

insert into  test_tbl(id,name)  values (1,'BOB') ;
insert into  test_tbl(id,name)  values (1,'bob') ;
id  name  bkt_col  
--  ----  -------  
1   bob   0        
1   BOB   1  

To query it use this sql, this way you avoid upper at run time and your stats will be well used.

    test_tbl where bkt_col = 1 and name IN ('BOB') 
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  • I am not sure that it is what it was asked. Let's say that I have record 'New York'. If a user asks for 'new york' then he is supposed to get this record. For that purpose the filter is supposed WHERE UPPER(col1) = 'NEW YORK'. How can I solve that with your solution? Using DEFAULT UPPER(col1) can solve it partially if the column is not updating. – Dmitrij Kultasev Nov 5 '16 at 6:41
  • - just out of curiosity did you actually create the projection with the function on the column ? because Vertica trows an error [Vertica][VJDBC](6333) ROLLBACK: Meta-functions or non-deterministic functions cannot be used in projection column expressions – Up_One Nov 6 '16 at 23:05
  • Ok , so you want him to treat it like case insensitive ! ? – Up_One Nov 6 '16 at 23:09
  • no matter what predicate value you have ! you want it to be treated like case insensitive thru projection definition ? – Up_One Nov 6 '16 at 23:21
  • The projection seemed to be the right way to solve my problem. The problem is that UPPER(col1) = UPPER('A') works much worse than col1 = 'A'. User can enter any 'a' or 'A'. To compare that with the best performance in the application layer we do the UPPERCASE for the string as 'A' and then I need to compare it in db. – Dmitrij Kultasev Nov 7 '16 at 21:04

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