Gracefully stops the execution of a running query.


Flow chart showing the syntax of the CANCEL QUERY keyword


The CANCEL QUERY command sets a flag that is periodically checked by the running target query. Cancelling depends on how often the flag is checked. It may not be immediate.

The query_id is the unique non-negative identification number of a running query in query registry.

CANCEL QUERY returns an error if:

  1. The given query_id is negative
  2. The query can't be found in registry

A query_id is found via the query_activity() meta-function.


Consider we have two open tabs of the QuestDB Web Console.

If we execute the following command in the first tab:

CREATE TABLE test AS (SELECT x FROM long_sequence(1000000000));

We can then check that the query is running in the second tab with the query_activity() meta-function:

SELECT * FROM query_activity();
291sharedjoe2024-01-09T10:51:05.878627Z2024-01-09T10:51:05.878627ZactiveCREATE TABLE test_tab AS (SELECT x FROM long_sequence(10000000000));
3021sharedjoe2024-01-09T10:51:10.661032Z2024-01-09T10:51:10.661032ZactiveSELECT * FROM query_activity();

We see that the two latest queries have query_id's of 29 and 30, respectively.

Want to cancel it?

There are two methods:



SELECT cancel_query(29)

After execution, the query then gets interrupted and returns a cancelled by user error in the first tab where the query was launched.

The cancel_query() function may cancel multiple queries at the same time or cancel without the need to lookup a specific query_id. You can do so by chaining with a LIKE operator:

SELECT cancel_query(query_id)
FROM query_activity()
WHERE query LIKE 'CREATE TABLE test_tab%'

This expression returns true if query was found in the registry and if the cancellation was set. Otherwise, it returns false.