Timestamp index

Use a timestamp index to speed up your time query with different granularities

This feature is supported from Pinot 0.11+.


The TIMESTAMP data type introduced in the Pinot 0.8.0 release stores value as millisecond epoch long value.

Typically, users won't need this low level granularity for analytics queries. Scanning the data and time value conversion can be costly for big data.

A common query pattern for timestamp columns is filtering on a time range and then grouping by using different time granularities(days/month/etc).

Typically, this requires the query executor to extract values, apply the transform functions then do filter/groupBy, with no leverage on the dictionary or index.

This was the inspiration for the Pinot timestamp index, which is used to improve the query performance for range query and group by queries on TIMESTAMP columns.

Supported data type

A TIMESTAMP index can only be created on the TIMESTAMP data type.

Timestamp Index

You can configure the granularity for a Timestamp data type column. Then:

  1. Pinot will pre-generate one column per time granularity using a forward index and range index. The naming convention is $${ts_column_name}$${ts_granularity}, where the timestamp column ts with granularities DAY, MONTH will have two extra columns generated: $ts$DAY and $ts$MONTH.

  2. Query overwrite for predicate and selection/group by: 2.1 GROUP BY: Functions like dateTrunc('DAY', ts) will be translated to use the underly column $ts$DAY to fetch data. 2.2 PREDICATE: range index is auto-built for all granularity columns.

Example query usage:

select count(*), 
       datetrunc('WEEK', ts) as tsWeek 
from airlineStats 
WHERE datetrunc('WEEK', ts) > fromDateTime('2014-01-16', 'yyyy-MM-dd') 
group by tsWeek
limit 10

Some preliminary benchmarking shows the query performance across 2.7 billion records improved from 45 secs to 4.2 secs using a timestamp index and a query like this:

select dateTrunc('YEAR', event_time) as y, 
       dateTrunc('MONTH', event_time) as m,  
from githubEvents 
group by y, m
limit 1000



The timestamp index is configured on a per column basis inside the fieldConfigList section in the table configuration.

Specify the timestampConfig field. This object must contain a field called granularities, which is an array with at least one of the following values:




  • HOUR

  • DAY

  • WEEK



  • YEAR

Sample config:

  "fieldConfigList": [
      "name": "ts",
      "timestampConfig": {
        "granularities": [

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