Psycopg2, Postgresql, Python: Fastest way to bulk-insert


I'm looking for the most efficient way to bulk-insert some millions of tuples into a database. I'm using Python, PostgreSQL and psycopg2.

I have created a long list of tulpes that should be inserted to the database, sometimes with modifiers like geometric Simplify.

The naive way to do it would be string-formatting a list of INSERT statements, but there are three other methods I've read about:

  1. Using pyformat binding style for parametric insertion
  2. Using executemany on the list of tuples, and
  3. Using writing the results to a file and using COPY.

It seems that the first way is the most efficient, but I would appreciate your insights and code snippets telling me how to do it right.

5/23/2017 11:47:05 AM

Accepted Answer

Yeah, I would vote for COPY, providing you can write a file to the server's hard drive (not the drive the app is running on) as COPY will only read off the server.

2/16/2010 9:41:02 AM

There is a new psycopg2 manual containing examples for all the options.

The COPY option is the most efficient. Then the executemany. Then the execute with pyformat.

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