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What’s the maximum level of recursion for the hash iterator before forcing bail-out?

This is a question I was asked recently whose answer I had to look in the code because it wasn’t documented anywhere. So, I’ll use this mean to propagate that piece of knowledge.

The value is a constant, hard coded in the product, and its value is five (5). This means that before the hash scan operator resorts to a sort based algorithm for any given subpartition that doesn’t fit into the granted memory from the workspace, five previous attempts to subdivide the original partition into smaller partitions must have happened.

At runtime, whenever a hash iterator must recursively subdivide a partition because the original one doesn’t fit into memory the recursion level counter for that partition is incremented by one. If anyone is subscribed to receive the Hash Warning event class, the first partition that has to recursively execute to such level of depth produces a Hash Warning event (with EventSubClass equals 1 = Bailout) indicating in the Integer Data column what is that level that has been reached. But if any other partition later also reaches any level of recursion that has already been reached by other partition, the event is not produced again.

It’s also worth mentioning that given the way the event reporting code is written, when a bail-out occurs, not only the Hash Warning event class with EventSubClass set to 1 (Bailout) is reported but, immediately after that, another Hash Warning event is reported with EventSubClass set to 0 (Recursion) and Integer Data reporting one level deeper (six).