Magento Open Source 2.1.x

Magento 2.1.x Notice: Magento 2.1.18 is the final 2.1.x release. After June 2019, Magento 2.1.x will no longer receive security patches, quality fixes, or documentation updates. To maintain your site's performance, security, and PCIPayment Card Industry: Refers to debit and credit cards and their associated businesses. compliance, upgrade to the latest version of Magento. The Magento User Guide 2.1.x remains available in PDF for Open Source and Commerce.

Using a Flat Catalog

Magento typically stores catalog data in multiple tables, based on the Entity-Attribute-Value (EAVEntity Attribute Value) model. Because product attributes are stored in many tables, SQL queries are sometimes long and complex.

In contrast, a flat catalog creates new tables on the fly, where each row contains all the necessary data about a product or categoryA set of products that share particular characteristics or attributes.. A flat catalog is updated automatically—either every minute, or according to your cron job. Flat catalog indexing can also speed up the processing of catalog and cart price rules. A catalog with as many as 500,000 SKUs can be indexed quickly as a flat catalog.

Before you enable a flat catalog for a live store, make sure to test the configuration in a development environment.