ORACLE SQL for EPM tips and tricks S01EP01!


Hey guys how are you? I decide to start a new series called ORACLE SQL for EPM tips and tricks. The idea here is to show the most useful SQL commands for EPM, how to improve performance, tips, tricks and everything that can be useful from a SQL point of view!

And to start well, I’ll show something very old but very useful that I don’t see too many people using these days. “WITH” clause.

I love to use “WITH” in my code. It helps organize the code, helps to optimize it and more important, to make it more efficient.

When you use “WITH” Oracle treats your query inside it as an inline view or resolved as a temporary table, making it easier and faster for Oracle to access that data if you need it again.

Simply putting, every time you needs to right a query that uses the same table over and over, it’ll probably be way more efficient if you use “WITH”.

The “WITH”clause works a little bit different from a regular SQL. We can say that we split the query in 2, one is the “WITH” declaration (That will behave like a table) and the other is the SQL that will Query the “WITH”.

WITH name_of_temp_table_here AS
(
    YOUR QUERY HERE
),
   name_of_temp_table_here2 AS
(
   SELECT *
   FROM name_of_temp_table_here, another_table...
)
SELECT *
FROM name_of_temp_table_here, name_of_temp_table_here2 

In the “WITH” you can have any kind of query you want. You can do joins, group by, you can also have more than one “WITH”, you can use the result of one “WITH” in the next “WITH”, you can do a lot of things.

But for now, lets take a look in a more real example. Let’s say that you have a table like I do, that contains all metadata from all yours applications:

Let’s say you want to get the Parent of a attribute that is associated with your Entity dimension. You probably will be doing something like this:

In the “FROM” we call the table 2 times and we join and filter everything we need. Since we don’t have attribute association in all levels we do a “Left Join” to make sure all Entities comes in the query. If we run a Explain Plan now we’ll get something like this:

As you can see, Oracle is querying the METADATA_EXTRACT table twice and each time it’s doing a FULL in one Partition (‘ENTITY’ and ‘PHYSICAL_GEOGRAPHY’ partitions).

Now, if we change the query (and we can do it in different ways, this is just one of them) to a “WITH” clause we ‘ll have something like this:

As you can see, we achieved the same results with the code a little bit different. Now I have all my filters in the “WITH” query and in the bottom I just call the “WITH” query 2 times and do what needs to be done.

If we run a Explain Plain now we will have:

As you can see, Oracle now is querying the METADATA_EXTRACT table just once and then his queries the SYS.SYS TEMP table twice. The only problem with this query and the way I did is that since we are creating a temporary table filtering 2 partitions and then later I’m filtering again, it’s basically doing 2 FULL scan in the same TEMP table, and even so, it’s a few seconds faster then the original query.

But this is just an example on how we can reduce the amount of times that Oracle needs to query a table. WITH is not a miracle clause or anything like that, is just another tool that we can use to optimize our code, and its performance needs to be evaluated in a case-by-case basis.

And even if the performance doesn’t change, I believe using “WITH” clause makes any query easier to ready, to test, to update and to right since you can divide your huge query in small bits and then join
everything in the bottom query.

“WITH” is a huge subject and we’ll be talking more about it in the next post, and this time we’ll be improving performance as well using “WITH” with “CONNECT BY”.

One Response to “ORACLE SQL for EPM tips and tricks S01EP01!”

  1. […] guys how are you? Let’s continue the SQL for EPM series. Today I’ll continue to talk about With with a small bonus of Connect by :). […]

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