Run-time side effect of dropping a composite unused index

Unused Index although they seem not needed , dropping them must be carefully tested  as it can have some side effect. As explained by Jonathan Lewis, due to index sanity check cardinality miss estimate can happen after dropping the unused index.

“The reason for this is the “index sanity check”. When the optimizer is doing its cardinality estimates, if it see equality conditions on the set of columns that make up an index it can use the distinct_keys statistic from the index in the calculation rather than using the standard calculation of multiplying together the num_distinct of the separate columns. ”

There is also a good example of the impact this can have on the query execution plan(switching join method from hash join to nested loop due to the drop of the estimated number of rows returned).Link

In this post i will show another interesting case when this can have an impact on query performance.As Franck Pachot Said :

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Playing with adaptive-ticks CPUs [CONFIG_NO_HZ_FULL] in UEK 4 and ORACLE database

The introduction of adaptive-ticks CPUs (Dynamic ticks) in UEK R4 represent a significant step forward on getting rid of the timer tick/interrupt (Full tickless operation).

“That interrupt is the CPU’s cue to reconsider which process should be running, catch up with read-copy-update (RCU) callbacks, and generally handle any necessary housekeeping.” Ref

This periodic timer interpret “interference” (based on CONFIG_HZ) have an effect on performance and power consumption which makes developers wish to abolish it. In previous version, a partial solution was used that consist on disabling timer tick for idle CPU which is controlled by the configuration option CONFIG_NO_HZ.This mode  reduced considerably the power usage as it allowed idle CPU to stay in deeper c-state. What adaptive ticks feature bring us is the possibility to reduce the timer interrupt to 1 tick/second (1HZ)  for non idle CPU having only one runnable task. This feature minimizes kernel overhead (up to 1%) and the potential latency problem , it was primarily targeted for  High-performance computing (HPC) and real time application so it’s not necessary for every one.

For more info on Nearly  full tickless operation please check this articles as most of the information here come from there :


  • OEL : 4.1.12-32.1.2.el6uek.x86_64
  • 4 CPU : 2 sockets / 2 cores per socket Continue reading