Hi. I'm interested in understanding the differences between
CLUSTERing a table and making a dedicated one.

We have a table with about 1 million records. On a given day, only
about 1% of them are of interest. That 1% changes every day (it's
WHERE active_date = today), and so we index and cluster on it.

Even so, the planner shows a very large cost for the Index Scan: about
3500. If I instead do a SELECT INTO temp_table FROM big_table WHERE
active_date = today, and then do SELECT * FROM temp_table, I get a
planned cost of 65. Yet, the actual time for both queries is almost
identical.

Questions:
1. Why is there such a discrepancy between the planner's estimate and
the actual cost?

2. In a case like this, will I in general see a performance gain by
doing a daily SELECT INTO and then querying from that table? My ad hoc
test doesn't indicate I would (despite the planner's prediction), and
I'd rather avoid this if it won't help.

3. In general, does CLUSTER provide all the performance benefits of a
dedicated table? If it doesn't, what does it lack?

Thank you.

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grouppgsql-performance @
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postedJun 1, '11 at 11:54p
activeJun 2, '11 at 1:33a
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