DEV Community

Shiv Iyer
Shiv Iyer

Posted on

Tips and Tricks for Troubleshooting ClickHouse Wait Events

Troubleshooting performance issues in ClickHouse often involves understanding the wait events that can occur during query execution. Wait events in ClickHouse provide insights into what operations are taking time, helping identify bottlenecks or areas that may require optimization. Here are some tips and tricks for troubleshooting ClickHouse performance by focusing on wait events:

1. Enable and Use the system.query_log Table

  • Activation: Ensure the query_log is enabled in your config.xml file. This table logs queries executed by ClickHouse, along with execution times and other metrics.
  • Analysis: Look for columns like QueryDurationMicroseconds, ReadRows, ReadBytes, and MemoryUsage to understand the performance of each query.

2. Interpreting Wait Events with system.query_thread_log

  • The system.query_thread_log table records detailed information about what each thread executing a query is doing at any point in time.
  • Key columns include ProfileEvent, which shows the event type, and EventTimeMicroseconds, indicating the duration.
  • Analyzing these events helps in pinpointing delays due to disk IO, network latency, or CPU waiting times.

3. Use the system.trace_log for Low-Level Insights

  • The trace_log provides granular details about operations, such as memory allocation and deallocation, which can be critical for diagnosing memory-related issues.
  • Pay attention to memory allocation patterns and whether any operations are consistently taking longer than expected.

4. Monitoring and Analyzing Mutex Waits

  • Mutex waits can be a significant source of delays, especially in highly concurrent environments.
  • Explore the system.metric_log table to identify mutex wait events. High values in LockAcquireMicroseconds can indicate contention points that need addressing.

5. Optimize Query Performance

  • If certain wait events are associated with specific types of queries, consider optimizing those queries. This could involve rewriting them, creating additional indexes, or changing the schema to reduce the load on the system.
  • Analyze the system.query_log to identify slow queries and focus on optimizing those first.

6. Profiling Tools and ClickHouse Monitoring

  • Utilize profiling tools like perf on Linux to get a deeper understanding of where CPU time is being spent within ClickHouse.
  • Set up monitoring for ClickHouse using tools like Grafana and Prometheus. ClickHouse exports a wide range of metrics that can be used to create dashboards showing detailed performance metrics, including wait events.

7. Adjusting ClickHouse Settings

  • Some performance issues can be mitigated by adjusting ClickHouse settings. For example, increasing max_threads might help if CPU is underutilized, while adjusting max_block_size can impact how data is processed and stored, potentially reducing wait times for certain operations.

8. Regular Maintenance

  • Regularly update statistics, optimize tables, and review the physical and logical design of your database. Keeping your ClickHouse instance well-tuned is crucial for minimizing wait events.


Diagnosing and troubleshooting wait events in ClickHouse is a multifaceted process that involves a thorough understanding of how ClickHouse operates under the hood. By systematically analyzing wait events and related metrics, you can identify and address the root causes of performance bottlenecks, ensuring that your ClickHouse database operates efficiently and effectively.

Automated ClickHouse Benchmarking w/ Google Cloud & Superset

Explore our comprehensive guide to benchmark the performance of your ClickHouse database with Google Cloud and Apache Superset


Estimated IO & CPU Costs for ClickHouse Troubleshooting

Understanding the estimated I/O and CPU costs in ClickHouse is essential for effective performance troubleshooting | ClickHouse DBA


Disable Foreign Key Checks for ClickHouse Ingestion Performance

ClickHouse Ingestion Performance: Discover how to disable foreign key checks and unlocking super fast data loading in ClickHouse


Migrating from Databricks to ChistaDATA Cloud for ClickHouse

In this practical guide we explore how to migrate your data from Databricks Warehouses to ChistaDATA Cloud for ClickHouse | ClickHouse DBA


Top comments (0)