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From Lefty Leverenz <>
Subject Dot syntax for DESCRIBE in wiki
Date Wed, 12 Mar 2014 09:16:42 GMT
The wiki gives this syntax for
DESCRIBE [EXTENDED|FORMATTED] [db_name.]table_name[DOT col_name
( [DOT field_name] | [DOT '$elem$'] | [DOT '$key$'] | [DOT '$value$'] )* ]
This is the only syntax with DOT, but apparently DOT just means "." or
perhaps it's a valid alternative to an actual dot.  What's the story here?
 Is this something everybody knows except me?

Note that [db_name.] shows an actual dot, so it's inconsistent with the
rest of the syntax.  Lars Francke added that part to the syntax in August
2013 (thanks, Lars) but if dots work then shouldn't the syntax show them?
 And if DOT is a keyword which also works, shouldn't both forms be shown?

Furthermore, dots are now optional.

So the doc needs an overhaul.  Examples would help.

Related jiras:

   - HIVE-1977 <>:  DESCRIBE
   TABLE syntax doesn't support specifying a database qualified table
name -- *dots
   - HIVE-5931<>:
    SQL std auth - add metastore get_role_participants api - to support
   DESCRIBE ROLE -- *changed to SHOW PRINCIPALS role_name, but Thejas
   brought up the syntax issue for DESCRIBE*

-- Lefty

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