[postgis-users] ST_value slow

J Payne jcpayne at uw.edu
Fri Feb 3 21:44:27 PST 2017

Hello.  I have an animal track that wanders around on a landscape, and I want to extract the pixel values for each location on the track.  This kind of operation is very common for animal studies.  The landscape is represented by a one-row raster map (“landforms4326”), and the GPS positions are in a table called “hourly_positions”.  I am using a recent version of PostGIS and a very simple query to find the pixel values:


UPDATE hourly_positions hp SET landform = (SELECT ST_Value(rast,hp.geom4326) FROM landforms4326)


I have about 450,000 points, and both the landscape raster and the point geometries are indexed.  For some reason, the operation is *incredibly* slow (it’s already been running for more than 8 hours on a nearly new Macbook Pro, and still isn’t finished).  Am I missing something?  I can’t for the life of me imagine why it would be so slow, since PostGIS is very fast with all sorts of other operations on the same data (intersections, etc.).





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