Querying S3 Express One Zone data - Amazon Athena
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Querying S3 Express One Zone data

The Amazon S3 Express One Zone storage class is a highly performant Amazon S3 storage class that provides single-digit millisecond response times. As such, it is useful for applications that frequently access data with hundreds of thousands of requests per second.

S3 Express One Zone replicates and stores data within the same Availability Zone to optimize for speed and cost. This differs from Amazon S3 Regional storage classes, which automatically replicate data across a minimum of three Amazon Availability Zones within an Amazon Web Services Region.

For more information, see What is S3 Express One Zone? in the Amazon S3 User Guide.


Confirm that the following conditions are met before you begin:

  • Athena engine version 3 – To use S3 Express One Zone with Athena SQL, your workgroup must be configured to use Athena engine version 3.

  • S3 Express One Zone permissions – When S3 Express One Zone calls an action like GET, LIST, or PUT on an Amazon S3 object, the storage class calls CreateSession on your behalf. For this reason, your IAM policy must allow the s3express:CreateSession action, which allows Athena to invoke the corresponding API operation.

Considerations and limitations

When you query S3 Express One Zone with Athena, consider the following points.

  • S3 Express One Zone buckets support only SSE_S3 encryption. Athena query results are written using SSE_S3 encryption regardless of the option that you choose in workgroup settings to encrypt query results. This limitation includes all scenarios in which Athena writes data to S3 Express One Zone buckets, including CREATE TABLE AS (CTAS) and INSERT INTO statements.

  • The Amazon Glue crawler is not supported for creating tables on S3 Express One Zone data.

  • The MSCK REPAIR TABLE statement is not supported. As a workaround, use ALTER TABLE ADD PARTITION.

  • ALTER TABLE ADD PARTITION, ALTER TABLE DROP PARTITION, and ALTER TABLE RENAME PARTITION are not supported for Iceberg tables in S3 Express One Zone.

  • The following file and table formats are unsupported or have limited support. If formats aren't listed, but are supported for Athena (such as Parquet, ORC, and JSON), then they're also supported for use with S3 Express One Zone storage.

    File or table format Limitation
    Apache Avro Not supported
    CloudTrail logs Not supported
    Apache Hudi Not supported
    Amazon Ion Not supported
    Logstash logs Not supported
    Apache WebServer logs Not supported
    Delta Lake DDL not supported. For information about creating a Delta Lake table using a dummy schema, see Synchronizing Delta Lake metadata. SELECT queries against the table are supported.

Getting started

Querying S3 Express One Zone data with Athena is straightforward. To get started, use the following procedure.

To use Athena SQL to query S3 Express One Zone data
  1. Transition your data to S3 Express One Zone storage. For more information, see Setting the storage class of an object in the Amazon S3 User Guide.

  2. Use a CREATE TABLE statement in Athena to catalog your data in Amazon Glue Data Catalog. For information about creating tables in Athena, see Creating tables in Athena and the CREATE TABLE statement.

  3. (Optional) Configure the query result location of your Athena workgroup to use an Amazon S3 directory bucket. Amazon S3 directory buckets are more performant that general buckets and are designed for workloads or performance-critical applications that require consistent single-digit millisecond latency. For more information, see Directory buckets overview in the Amazon S3 User Guide.