> I did in that way just to not use postgresql specific feature.
> I can give it a try and I let you know, however the question remain,
> why the index usage is lost if used in that way ?

Because PostgreSQL is materializing the entire UNION data set in the 
subselect.   What Postgres version are you using?   I thought this was fixed 
in 7.4, but maybe not ...

Josh Berkus
Aglio Database Solutions
San Francisco

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