Opened 3 years ago

Last modified 3 years ago

#20414 new Bug

Handling of numbers under oracle is slow

Reported by: Shai Berger Owned by: Shai Berger
Component: Database layer (models, ORM) Version: master
Severity: Normal Keywords: oracle performance
Cc: Anssi Kääriäinen, Ian Kelly Triage Stage: Accepted
Has patch: yes Needs documentation: no
Needs tests: no Patch needs improvement: yes
Easy pickings: no UI/UX: no


With current code, for all number columns, the Oracle backend asks cx_Oracle to return the numbers as strings, and then transforms them back to numbers on the way out. All this is done because Oracle supports higher precision (and a wider range of integers) than the Python float type; some values, if they are to be reported accurately, must be returned as decimal.Decimals, and cx_Oracle doesn't apparently do that on its own.

With cx_Oracle 5, though, it is possible to use a much better approach, on a per-column (rather than per-row) basis, selecting the right output type when there is enough information to do so, and making most of the decisions once-per-query instead of once-per-row.

An original patch for this was written by Ian Kelly; I improved it and made a pull-request in the stretch towards 1.5, but there was no ticket for it and so it was never merged. I hope we can finally merge it into 1.6.

There was a little saga of discussions around this (mostly Anssi, Ian and myself, Some other issues are also mentioned there. But this is the main one.

So now there is a ticket. Things changed, and the pull-request needed updating. The new one is at

Change History (3)

comment:1 Changed 3 years ago by Russell Keith-Magee

Needs documentation: unset
Needs tests: unset
Patch needs improvement: unset
Triage Stage: UnreviewedAccepted

comment:2 Changed 3 years ago by Tim Graham

Patch needs improvement: set

Newest pull request appears to be here. It at least needs to be updated to reflect the fact that it won't be added in 1.6 as currently documented.

comment:3 Changed 3 years ago by Shai Berger

Well, I seemed to have botched that branch -- I need to fix it. Until then, I'll close the PR.

Anyway, later tests I ran showed this to be a lot less promising than I had thought. The reason is that cx_Oracle, internally, does this return-number-as-string-and-transform-to-Python-int dance whenever the database column can hold more than 9 digits; Django's Oracle backend uses number(11) for ints. I'll revisit this when I finally get to meddling with cx_Oracle internals (this is needed mostly for Python 3 support, which is currently quite completely broken).

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