Generally, you want to have different types of data in different CFs
so you can tune them separately (key / row caches).

Mixing different row types in one CF also makes doing get_slice_range
scans difficult.

On Fri, Mar 5, 2010 at 12:04 PM, Erik Holstad <> wrote:
> What are the benefits of using multiple ColumnFamilies compared to using a
> composite
> row name?
> Example: You have messages that you want to index on sent and to.
> So you can either have
> ColumnFamilyFrom:userTo:{userFrom->messageid}
> ColumnFamilyTo:userFrom:{userTo->messageid}
> or something like
> ColumnFamily:user_to:{user1_messageId, user2_messageId}
> ColumnFamily:user_from:{user1_messageId, user2_messageId}
> One thing that I can see the advantage of using families are if you want to
> use different types in the families. But are there others? Like storage
> space,
> read/write speeds etc.
> --
> Regards Erik

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