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Clustered Index

Definition - What does Clustered Index mean?

A clustered index is a type of index where the table records are physically re-ordered to match the index.

Clustered indexes are efficient on columns that are searched for a range of values. After the row with first value is found using a clustered index, rows with subsequent index values are guaranteed to be physically adjacent, thus providing faster access for a user query or an application.

Techopedia explains Clustered Index

In other words, a clustered index stores the actual data, where a non-clustered index is a pointer to the data. In most DBMSs, you can only have one clustered index per table, though there are systems that support multiple clusters (DB2 being an example).

Like a regular index that is stored unsorted in a database table, a clustered index can be a composite index, such as a concatenation of first name and last name in a table of personal information.

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