Apache ORC - the smallest, fastest columnar storage for Hadoop workloads

Clone this repo:
  1. 1b57db2 ORC-661: Use ChronoLocalDate and day of epoch instead of java's Date for column statistics. by Owen O'Malley · 6 months ago master
  2. 7bec5e0 Fix Julian/Gregorian cutoff in a comment by Piotr Findeisen · 7 months ago
  3. 0268b4f ORC-644: Support positional mapping for nested types. by Arvin Zheng · 7 months ago
  4. 4688240 ORC-626: Reading Struct Column Having Multiple Fields With Same Name Causes java.io.EOFException by Syed Shameerur Rahman · 10 months ago
  5. 84353fb ORC-658: Fix NoClassDefFoundError during benchmark data generation (#535) by Dongjoon Hyun · 7 months ago

Apache ORC

ORC is a self-describing type-aware columnar file format designed for Hadoop workloads. It is optimized for large streaming reads, but with integrated support for finding required rows quickly. Storing data in a columnar format lets the reader read, decompress, and process only the values that are required for the current query. Because ORC files are type-aware, the writer chooses the most appropriate encoding for the type and builds an internal index as the file is written. Predicate pushdown uses those indexes to determine which stripes in a file need to be read for a particular query and the row indexes can narrow the search to a particular set of 10,000 rows. ORC supports the complete set of types in Hive, including the complex types: structs, lists, maps, and unions.

ORC File Library

This project includes both a Java library and a C++ library for reading and writing the Optimized Row Columnar (ORC) file format. The C++ and Java libraries are completely independent of each other and will each read all versions of ORC files. But the C++ library only writes the original (Hive 0.11) version of ORC files, and will be extended in the future.


  • Latest: Apache ORC releases
  • Maven Central: Maven Central
  • Downloads: Apache ORC downloads

The current build status:

  • Master branch master build status
  • Pull Requests

Bug tracking: Apache Jira

The subdirectories are:

  • c++ - the c++ reader and writer
  • cmake_modules - the cmake modules
  • docker - docker scripts to build and test on various linuxes
  • examples - various ORC example files that are used to test compatibility
  • java - the java reader and writer
  • proto - the protocol buffer definition for the ORC metadata
  • site - the website and documentation
  • snap - the script to build snaps of the ORC tools
  • tools - the c++ tools for reading and inspecting ORC files


  • Install java 1.7 or higher
  • Install maven 3 or higher
  • Install cmake

To build a release version with debug information:

% mkdir build
% cd build
% cmake ..
% make package
% make test-out

To build a debug version:

% mkdir build
% cd build
% make package
% make test-out

To build a release version without debug information:

% mkdir build
% cd build
% make package
% make test-out

To build only the Java library:

% cd java
% mvn package

To build only the C++ library:

% mkdir build
% cd build
% cmake .. -DBUILD_JAVA=OFF
% make package
% make test-out