# Re: [HACKERS] <> join selectivity estimate question

```Robert Haas <robertmh...@gmail.com> writes:
> The relevant code is in neqsel().  It estimates the fraction of rows
> that will be equal, and then does 1 - that number.  Evidently, the
> query planner thinks that l1.l_suppkey = l2.l_suppkey would almost
> always be true, and therefore l1.l_suppkey <> l2.l_suppkey will almost
> always be false.  I think the presumed selectivity of l1.l_suppkey =
> l2.l_suppkey is being computed by var_eq_non_const(), but I'm a little
> puzzled by that function is managing to produce a selectivity estimate
> of, essentially, 1.```
```
No, I believe it's going through neqjoinsel and thence to eqjoinsel_semi.
This query will have been flattened into a semijoin.

I can reproduce a similarly bad estimate in the regression database:

regression=# explain select * from tenk1 a where exists(select * from tenk1 b
where a.thousand = b.thousand and a.twothousand <> b.twothousand);
QUERY PLAN
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
Hash Semi Join  (cost=583.00..1067.25 rows=1 width=244)
Hash Cond: (a.thousand = b.thousand)
Join Filter: (a.twothousand <> b.twothousand)
->  Seq Scan on tenk1 a  (cost=0.00..458.00 rows=10000 width=244)
->  Hash  (cost=458.00..458.00 rows=10000 width=8)
->  Seq Scan on tenk1 b  (cost=0.00..458.00 rows=10000 width=8)
(6 rows)

The problem here appears to be that we don't have any MCV list for
the "twothousand" column (because it has a perfectly flat distribution),
and the heuristic that eqjoinsel_semi is using for the no-MCVs case