Managed Tables vs. External Tables


Let us compare and contrast between Managed Tables and External Tables.

  • When we say EXTERNAL as part of CREATE TABLE, it makes the table EXTERNAL.
  • Rest of the syntax is same as Managed Table.
  • However, when we drop Managed Table, it will delete metadata from metastore as well as data from HDFS.
  • When we drop External Table, only metadata will be dropped, not the data.
  • Typically we use External Table when same dataset is processed by multiple frameworks such as Hive, Pig, Spark etc.

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