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A Trillion-Row Operator

Joe Obbish sets up a challenge:

48 billion rows for a single operator is certainly a large number for most workloads. I ended up completely missing the point and started wondering how quickly a query could process a trillion rows through a single operator. Eventually that led to a SQL performance challenge: what is the fastest that you can get an actual plan with at least one operator processing a trillion rows? The following rules are in play:

1. Start with no user databases
2. Any query can run up to MAXDOP 8
3. Temp tables may be created and populated but all such work needs to finish in 30 seconds or less
4. A RECOMPILE query hint must be present in the final query
5. Undocumented features and behavior are fair game

Read on to see what Joe learned.