Making the Right Choice: When to Use Parquet Over Delta File Format

Nnaemezue Obi-Eyisi
2 min readOct 26, 2023

In the fast-evolving landscape of big data processing, choosing the right file format can significantly impact your data pipeline’s efficiency and effectiveness. Parquet and Delta are two popular formats, each with its own strengths and ideal use cases. In this article, we’ll explore when it makes sense to opt for the Parquet file format over Delta.

1. Query-Optimized Analytics

Scenario: You have a data processing pipeline primarily designed for running analytical queries on extensive datasets, and you don’t need features like ACID transactions or data versioning.

Solution: In this case, Parquet shines as the preferred choice. Its design prioritizes high query performance and is widely supported by various data processing tools. You can efficiently analyze large datasets without the added complexity of Delta’s features.

2. Simplicity

Scenario: Your data pipeline and processing requirements are straightforward, and you don’t require advanced capabilities like schema evolution, strong data consistency, or transaction support.

Solution: Parquet offers a simple and efficient solution in such cases. Its straightforward structure is easy to work with and can streamline your data pipeline without introducing unnecessary complexities.

3. Compatibility



Nnaemezue Obi-Eyisi

I am passionate about empowering, educating, and encouraging individuals pursuing a career in data engineering. Currently a Senior Data Engineer at Capgemini