Generating Tally Tables With Snowflake DB

Kevin Feasel

2018-12-27

Syntax

Koen Verbeeck shows us how to use the GENERATOR function to build a tally table in Snowflake:

I’m starting a little series on some of the nice features/capabilities in Snowflake (the cloud data warehouse). In each part, I’ll highlight something that I think it’s interesting enough to share. It might be some SQL function that I’d really like to be in SQL Server, it might be something else.
In the first part: the GENERATOR function. In short, it lets you generate a virtual table with a specified number of rows, or in database lingo: a tally table (or numbers table). A tally table can help you solve a lot of problems in SQL, but the TL;DR version is that it replaces loops/cursors most of the time and allows you to tackle the issue in a true set-based manner.

Naturally, as I read the article, I got the Bad Religion song stuck in my head. That’s an occupational hazard, I suppose.

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