Hypertable is a high performance, open source, massively scalable database modeled after Bigtable, Google's proprietary, massively scalable database. Hypertable runs on top of a distributed file system such as the Apache HDFS, GlusterFS or the CloudStore Kosmos File System (KFS). It is written almost entirely in C++ as the developers believed it had significant performance advantages over Java.


Hypertable software was originally developed at the company Zvents before 2008. Doug Judd was a promoter of Hypertable. In January 2009, Baidu, the Chinese language search engine, became a project sponsor. A version was described in a blog in February 2009. Development ended in March 2016.

Query Interface

Custom API Command-line / Shell

The Hypertable Query Language (HQL) allows you to create, modify, and query tables and invoke administrative commands. HQL is interpreted by the following interfaces: - The hypertable command line interface (ht shell), - The hql_exec and hql_query Thrift API methods, - The Hypertable::HqlInterpreter C++ class.

Concurrency Control

Multi-version Concurrency Control (MVCC)

The system uses Multi-Version Concurrency Control (MVCC) and by default will auto-assign revision numbers using a timestamp.

Isolation Levels

Snapshot Isolation

Timestamp is used internally to provide snapshot isolation for queries.

Data Model

Column Family

Hypertable uses a set of related columns known as a column family. Users may supply an optional column qualifier and specify the qualified column as family:qualifier.

System Architecture


Hypertable is capable of running on top of any filesystem. All the Range Servers of the Hypertable share the same filesystem.