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Odd behaviour from computed columns in a left outer join


Odd behaviour from computed columns in a left outer join

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Kevin Dahl
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I have the following query:


SELECT CE.ID ,
CA.CustomerID,
CA.PostalCode
FROM DBXN.CommunicationEntry CE
LEFT OUTER JOIN ( SELECT A.ID ,
CA.CustomerID ,
A.PostalCode,
A.EnglishAddressLine1
FROM DBXN.Customer_Address AS CA
INNER JOIN DBXN.Address AS A ON CA.AddressID = A.ID
) AS CA ON CE.CustomerID = CA.CustomerID
WHERE CE.ID = 6298103



When I run this I get very good results, there's an index seek and a key lookup on the Customer_Address table, and an index seek on the Address table - all with very low estimated number of rows (between 1-3). Each have seek predicates coming from the joined column.

However, the second I introduce this additional column:


SELECT CE.ID ,
CA.CustomerID,
CA.PostalCode,
CA.EnglishAddressLine1
FROM DBXN.CommunicationEntry CE
LEFT OUTER JOIN ( SELECT A.ID ,
CA.CustomerID ,
A.PostalCode,
A.EnglishAddressLine1
FROM DBXN.Customer_Address AS CA
INNER JOIN DBXN.Address AS A ON CA.AddressID = A.ID
) AS CA ON CE.CustomerID = CA.CustomerID
WHERE CE.ID = 6298103



...the query plan changes to a full index scan where the estimated number of rows includes every record in the table, and there are no predicates whatsoever used until further up stream when it hits a filter. By that time there's an estimated 82.5 million rows with an estimated data size of 21GB.

The EnglishAddressLine1 column is a computed column that takes several of the other fields in the Address table and builds a formatted address, there are several others like it for Line2/Line3, etc - but this is the simplest illustration of the problem.

Just wondering if anyone has any insight on why a computed column coming from a left outer join would cause this?
Attachments
NQ1.sqlplan (11 views, 34.00 KB)
NQ2.sqlplan (11 views, 406.00 KB)
Alexander Suprun
Alexander Suprun
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Please post plans for both of the queries.


Alex Suprun
Kevin Dahl
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Hey Alex,

I've added the .sqlplan files to the original post... Thanks for your response!
Kenneth Fisher
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Just a guess but you might consider looking at your indexes. You probably have an index that covers CE.ID, CA.CustomerID and CA.PostalCode but doesn't include CA.EnglishAddressLine1.

I did a quick test and I was able to include a computed column in an index. Both as part of the index and as an included column.

Kenneth Fisher
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Alexander Suprun
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Kenneth.Fisher (8/30/2012)
Just a guess but you might consider looking at your indexes. You probably have an index that covers CE.ID, CA.CustomerID and CA.PostalCode but doesn't include CA.EnglishAddressLine1.

I did a quick test and I was able to include a computed column in an index. Both as part of the index and as an included column.
Unfortunately it's not the case here. The function is referencing columns from other tables.


Alex Suprun
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Kevin,

Can you post the schema and indexes for the tables CommunicationEntry, Customer_Address, and Address please?


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Kevin Dahl
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It's also only one of twelve similar columns on the same table, and that table currently sits at 19.7 million rows. Even if we could index each of them, I'm not sure we would. This is a db in development at the moment, and it would probably make more sense to go another route - like calling the address formatting function on the A.ID on the left side of the join, or elsewhere.

What I'm really interested in though, is determining why the join predicate gets applied so differently in each of the scenarios.
Kevin Dahl
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Hey Craig,

I'm not sure I could post them in a useful format, if you're looking to try and re-create the actual problem. There ends up being quite a few foreign key relations through those three tables.

I'll check with the powers that be, and see how much I can post here.
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There are more tables in the query than those 3.
To be able to re-create the issue these tables are needed as well:

[DBXN].StreetNumberSuffixLookup
[DBXN].StreetTypeLookup
[DBXN].StreetDirectionLookup
[DBXN].RouteServiceTypeLookup
[DBXN].DeliveryInstallationTypeLookup
[DBXN].CountryLookup
[DBXN].ProvinceLookup


Alex Suprun
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Kevin Dahl (8/30/2012)
Hey Craig,

I'm not sure I could post them in a useful format, if you're looking to try and re-create the actual problem. There ends up being quite a few foreign key relations through those three tables.

I'll check with the powers that be, and see how much I can post here.


I'm not looking to recreate the issue, I won't have your data disparity and other assundry bits to do that. What I'm looking to do is be able to analyze the indexes available, what's being ignored and what else it could use, things like that. With an understanding of the clustered vs. non-clustered we can offer you an alternative version of the same logic that will work with what you've already got built... hopefully.


- Craig Farrell

Never stop learning, even if it hurts. Ego bruises are practically mandatory as you learn unless you've never risked enough to make a mistake.

For better assistance in answering your questions | Forum Netiquette
For index/tuning help, follow these directions. |Tally Tables

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