SQL Query API Endpoint


This endpoint executes an SQL query and returns the results in CSV or JSON format, with optional metadata.

To retrieve result set metadata without query execution, submit the query to the /api/sql/meta endpoint.


The result set is filtered by the database based on the entity read permissions granted to the user.

Therefore the same query executed by users with different entity permissions produces different results.

Scheduled queries are executed with full All Entities: Read permissions.

Connection Query

To test a connection, execute a query without table reference.


Use this query for validation in connection pool implementations such as Apache Commons DBCP.


Method Path Content-Type Header
POST /api/sql application/x-www-form-urlencoded


Name Type Description
q string [Required] Query text.
outputFormat string Output format: csv or json. Default: csv.
Specify null format for performance testing.
If format is null, the query is executed but the response output is not produced by the database.
metadataFormat string Metadata format for CSV format. Default: HEADER.
queryId string User-defined identification submitted at request time to identify the query. Cancel a long-running query with its queryId.
limit integer Maximum number of rows to return.
Default: 0.
The number of returned rows is equal to the limit parameter or the LIMIT clause, whichever is lower.
discardOutput boolean If set to true, discards the produced content without sending it to the client.
encodeTags boolean If set to true, the tags column is encoded in JSON format for safe parsing on the client.
datetimeAsNumber boolean If set to true, the datetime column contains Unix time in milliseconds, similar to the time column.


As an alternative, submit the query as a text payload with the Content-Type header set to text/plain and other parameters included in the query string.

limit parameter versus LIMIT clause

limit LIMIT Result
5 3 3
5 10 5
5 - 5
0 3 3
- 3 3
- - -
statement.executeQuery("SELECT datetime, value FROM \"mpstat.cpu_busy\" LIMIT 3");
//results are limited to 3 records

Cancelling a Query

Cancel an active query by submitting a request to /api/sql/cancel?queryId={client-query-id} endpoint from the client.

The client-query-id parameter identifies the query to be cancelled.


The CSV formatted response is subject to the following rules:

  • String values are enclosed in double quotes ", even if special characters are not present.
  • NULL is printed as an empty string.
  • Numeric values, including NaN, are not enclosed in quotes.


The response can include optional metadata to assist API clients in processing results, for example to convert text values in CSV or JSON field values into language-specific data types.

The metadata is specified as JSON-LD (JSON linked data) according to the W3C Model for Tabular Data.

Download ATSD JSON-LD schema:

Sample metadata:

    "@context": ["http://www.w3.org/ns/csvw", {
        "atsd": "http://www.axibase.com/schemas/2017/07/atsd.jsonld"
    "dc:created": {
        "@value": "2017-07-04T16:59:19.908Z",
        "@type": "xsd:date"
    "dc:publisher": {
        "schema:name": "Axibase Time-Series Database",
        "schema:url": {
            "@id": "https://atsd_hostname:8443"
    "dc:title": "SQL Query",
    "rdfs:comment": "SELECT tbl.value*100 AS \"cpu_percent\", tbl.datetime 'sample-date'\n FROM \"mpstat.cpu_busy\" tbl \n WHERE datetime > now - 1*MINUTE",
    "@type": "Table",
    "url": "sql.csv",
    "tableSchema": {
        "columns": [{
            "columnIndex": 1,
            "name": "tbl.value * 100",
            "titles": "cpu_percent",
            "datatype": "double",
            "table": "cpu_busy",
            "propertyUrl": "atsd:value"
        }, {
            "columnIndex": 2,
            "name": "tbl.datetime",
            "titles": "sample-date",
            "datatype": "xsd:dateTimeStamp",
            "table": "cpu_busy",
            "propertyUrl": "atsd:datetime",
            "dc:description": "Sample time in ISO8601 format"
    "dialect": {
        "commentPrefix": "#",
        "delimiter": ",",
        "doubleQuote": true,
        "quoteChar": "\"",
        "headerRowCount": 1,
        "encoding": "utf-8",
        "header": true,
        "lineTerminators": ["\r\n", "\n"],
        "skipBlankRows": false,
        "skipColumns": 0,
        "skipRows": 0,
        "skipInitialSpace": false,
        "trim": false,
        "@type": "Dialect"

Metadata in JSON Output Format

By default, results in JSON output format incorporate metadata. This includes table and column schema.

Metadata in CSV Output Format

The metadataFormat parameter specifies how metadata is incorporated into a CSV response.

Value Description
NONE Do not include metadata in the response.
HEADER [Default] Add JSON-LD metadata to the Base64 encoded Link header according to W3C Model for Tabular Data.
<data:application/csvm+json;base64,eyJAY29...ifX0=>; rel="describedBy"; type="application/csvm+json"
Maximum response header size is 12 KB. Do not use Link header option if the response contains many columns or columns with long names.
EMBED Append JSON-LD metadata to CSV header as comments prefixed by hash symbol.
COMMENTS Append CSV metadata to CSV header as comments prefixed by hash symbol.


curl Query Example

curl https://atsd_hostname:8443/api/sql  \
  -k --compressed \
  --user {username}:{password} \
  --data 'q=SELECT entity, value FROM "mpstat.cpu_busy" WHERE datetime > now - 1*MINUTE'

Use backslash '\' to escape single quotes in the query text.

curl https://atsd_hostname:8443/api/sql  \
  -k --compressed \
  --user {username}:{password} \
  --data 'q=SELECT * FROM "mpstat.cpu_busy" WHERE entity =  '\''nurswghbs001'\'' AND datetime between '\''2018-03-01T17:00:00Z'\'' AND '\''2018-03-02T17:00:00Z'\'''

Alternatively, encode the query text using URL encoding.

curl https://atsd_hostname:8443/api/sql  \
  -k --compressed \
  --user {username}:{password} \
  --data 'q=SELECT%20*%20FROM%20%22mpstat.cpu_busy%22%20WHERE%20entity%20%3D%20%27nurswghbs001%27%20AND%20datetime%20between%20%272018-03-01T17%3A00%3A00Z%27%20AND%20%272018-03-02T17%3A00%3A00Z%27'

bash Client Example

Execute query specified in a query.sql file and write CSV results to /tmp/report-1.csv.

./sql.sh -o /tmp/report-1.csv -i query.sql -f csv

Execute query specified inline and store results in /tmp/report-2.csv.

./sql.sh --output /tmp/report-2.csv --query "SELECT entity, value FROM \"mpstat.cpu_busy\" WHERE datetime > now - 1*minute LIMIT 3"

Review bash client parameters.

Java Client Example

SQL to CSV example in Java.

Encoding Tags

encodeTags=true&q=SELECT entity, datetime, value, tags FROM df.disk_used WHERE datetime > current_hour LIMIT 1
  • Encoding in CSV Format

Response Examples