Specifying COPY FROM Options

Each COPY statement requires a FROM option to indicate the location of the file or files being loaded. This syntax excerpt shows the available FROM keywords, and their associated file format options:

...| 'pathToData' [ ON nodename | ON nodeset | ON ANY NODE ] 
...... [ BZIP | GZIP | LZO | UNCOMPRESSED ] [, ...] 
...| LOCAL STDIN | 'pathToData' 
...... [ BZIP | GZIP | LZO | UNCOMPRESSED ] [, ...] 

Each of the FROM keywords lets you optionally specify the format of the load file as UNCOMPRESSED, BZIP, GZIP, or LZO.

Note: When using COPY in conjunction with a CREATE EXTERNAL TABLE statement, you cannot use the COPY FROM STDIN or LOCAL options.

Some COPY FROM options are not available for all file types.  See COPY Parameters.

Loading from STDIN

Using STDIN for the FROM option lets you load uncompressed data, BZIP, or GZIP files.

Loading from a Specific Path

Use the pathToData argument to indicate the location of the file to load. You can load data from the following locations:

You can specify more than one path in the same COPY statement, as in the following example.

=> COPY myTable FROM 'hdfs:///data/sales/01/*.dat', 'hdfs:///data/sales/02/*.dat', 

If pathToData resolves to a storage location on a local file system (not HDFS), and the user invoking COPY is not a superuser, these permissions are required:

If a user with privileges, who is not a superuser, invokes COPY from that storage location, Vertica prevents symbolic links from allowing unauthorized access.

Loading with Wildcards (glob)

You can invoke COPY for a large number of files in a shared directory with a single statement such as:

=> COPY myTable FROM '/data/manyfiles/*.dat' ON ANY NODE;

The glob (*) must indicate a set of files, not directories. The following statement fails if /data/manyfiles contains any subdirectories:

=> COPY myTable FROM '/data/manyfiles/*' ON ANY NODE;

Using a wildcard with the ON ANY NODE clause expands the file list on the initiator node. This command then distributes the individual files among all nodes, so that the COPY workload is evenly distributed across the entire cluster.

ON ANY NODE is the default for HDFS paths, as in the following example:

=> COPY myTable FROM 'hdfs:///data/manyfiles/*';

You can also distribute a file set across a subset of nodes, which you might do to balance concurrent loads. For example, this command distributes the loading of individual files among the three named nodes:

=> COPY myTable FROM '/mydirectory/ofmanyfiles/*.dat' 
   ON (v_vmart_node0001, v_vmart_node0002, v_vmart_node0003);

Distributing file loads across nodes depends on two configuration parameters, EnableApportionLoad and EnableApportionFileLoad. Both are enabled by default. See General Parameters for more information about these parameters.

Loading from an S3 Bucket

To access data in S3 you must first do the following tasks:

You might need to set other AWS Parameters to specify a certificate authority. You can set parameters just for the current session using ALTER SESSION, or change them globally using SET_CONFIG_PARAMETER. If you use session tokens you must set all AWS parameters at the session level.

You can then load data from S3 as in the following example.

=> COPY t FROM 's3://AWS_DataLake/sales.parquet' PARQUET;

You can specify either a path, as in the previous example, or a glob, if all files in the glob can be loaded together. In the following example, AWS_DataLake contains only ORC files.

=> COPY t FROM 's3://AWS_DataLake/*' ORC;

You can specify a list of comma-separated S3 buckets as in the following example. All buckets must be in the same region. To load from more than one region, use separate COPY statements and change the value of AWSRegion between calls.

=> COPY t FROM 's3://AWS_Data_1/sales.parquet', 's3://AWS_Data_2/sales.parquet' PARQUET;

Parquet files can be partitioned, and Vertica can use partitioning information to improve query performance. See Using Partition Columns for more information.

Loading from ORC and Parquet Files

In the COPY statement, specify a format of ORC or PARQUET:

=> COPY tableName FROM path ORC[(hive_partition_cols='partitions')];
=> COPY tableName FROM path PARQUET[(hive_partition_cols='partitions')];

For information about the hive_partition_cols parameter, see Using Partition Columns.

For information about performance improvements specific to these formats, see Improving Query Performance.

Be aware that if you load from multiple files in the same COPY statement, and any of them is aborted, the entire load aborts. This behavior differs from that for delimited files, where the COPY statement loads what it can and ignores the rest.

Loading on Specific Nodes

You can optionally indicate which node or nodes should parse the input by using any of the following:

Using the ON ANY NODE clause indicates that the source file to load is available on all of the nodes. If you specify this clause, COPY opens the file and parses it from any node in the cluster. ON ANY NODE is the default for HDFS and S3 paths.

Using the ON nodeset clause indicates that the source file is on all named nodes. If you specify this clause, COPY opens the file and parses it from any node in the set. Be sure that the source file you specify is available and accessible on each applicable cluster node.

Loading from a Local Client

To bulk-load data from a client, and without requiring database superuser privileges, use the COPY FROM LOCAL option. You can load from either STDIN, or a specific path, but not from a specific node (or ON ANY NODE), since you are loading from the client. All local files are loaded and parsed serially with each COPY statement, so you cannot perform parallel loads with the LOCAL option. See Using Parallel Load Streams.

You can load one or more files in the supported formats: UNCOMPRESSED, BZIP, GZIP, or LZO.

For specific information about saving rejected data and exceptions files when using COPY from LOCAL, see Capturing Load Rejections and Exceptions.

Loading Compressed Files (BZIP, GZIP, and LZO)

You can load files compressed with BZIP, GZIP, or LZO. To do so, you must indicate the compression format for each file when loading multiple files. For example, this statement copies a BZIP file into the flex table twitter, using the fjsonparser:

=> COPY twitter FROM '/server1/TWITTER/tweets1.json.bz2' BZIP parser fjsonparser() direct; 
 Rows Loaded 
(1 row) 

The following statement loads an LZO file delimited with '|' characters into the flex table twitter:

=> COPY twitter FROM '/server1/TWITTER/tweets2.lzo' LZO DELIMITER '|';
 Rows Loaded
(3 rows)

Vertica supports the following options to the lzop command used to compress the file:

For more information about these options, see lzop.org.

You cannot use BZIP, GZIP, and LZO compression with files in the ORC or Parquet formats.