Options to monitor compactions

You can view the progress of compactions using the SHOW COMPACTIONS statement or by querying the COMPACTIONS view within the SYS database.

The query statement displays the following details about compactions:

  • C_ID: Unique internal compaction ID
  • C_DATABASE: Hive database name
  • C_TABLE: Table name
  • C_PARTITION: Partition name (if the table is partitioned)
  • C_TYPE: Major or minor compaction
  • C_STATE: Compaction state
    • initiated: waiting in queue to be compacted
    • working: currently being compacted
    • ready for cleaning: compaction completed and old files scheduled for removal
    • failed: compaction job failed. Details are printed to the metastore log.
    • succeeded: compaction job completed successfully
    • attempted: initiator attempted to schedule a compaction but failed or hive.compactor.initiator.failed.compacts.threshold is breached and compaction is skipped . Details are printed to the metastore log.
  • C_WORKER_HOST: Thread ID of the worker thread performing the compaction
  • C_WORKER_ID: Unique internal worker ID
  • C_WORKER_VERSION: Version of distribution with running worker
  • C_ENQUEUE_TIME: Time when compaction request was placed
  • C_START: Start time of the compaction job
  • C_DURATION: Duration (in ms) of the compaction job
  • C_HADOOP_JOB_ID: ID of the submitted MapReduce job for MR compaction. 'None' for query-based compaction.
  • C_INITIATOR_HOST: Host where initiator is configured
  • C_INITIATOR_ID: Unique internal initiator ID
  • C_INITIATOR_VERSION: Version of distribution with active initiator

The following sections describe the various options that you can use to monitor compactions.


You can run the SHOW COMPACTIONS statement to view details about all the compaction jobs.


Authorization is not required to use the SHOW COMPACTIONS statement. Therefore, every user can view compactions and their current state.

Since the statement lists all the compaction jobs, you cannot filter or limit the results as required. Alternatively, you can use the SYS database to query and filter specific compactions.

Querying the SYS database

The SYS database in the Hive metastore contains the following sources that you can use to monitor compactions:

  • COMPACTION_QUEUE: Stores information about compaction requests - both explicit user submitted and compactions discovered by the initiator and enqueued.
  • COMPLETED_COMPACTIONS: Stores the same information present in COMPACTION_QUEUE along with the compaction’s end time. Records are moved to the completed table when the cleaner finishes the job on the compaction request.
  • COMPACTIONS: A view over the COMPACTION_QUEUE and COMPLETED_COMPACTIONS tables that resolves the column values to human readable format.

The SYS database tables and views are treated as normal Hive external tables or views, and therefore, standard access policies can be configured against these sources.

The following examples illustrate how you can run queries on the SYS.COMPACTIONS view to monitor compactions:

Query to display the last 10 failed compactions
WHERE C_STATE='failed'
Query to check the status of a specific compaction using the compaction ID
	WHERE C_ID='1234';
Query to view the total number of compactions in a particular state
	WHERE C_STATE='ready for cleaning';