> I can also change the schema to a certain extent, so would it be worthwhile
> to put indices on the queried tables (or refactor them) hoping the distinct
> does an index scan instead of sort...  would the query planner take
> advantage of that?

Use the GROUP BY, with an index on the grouped columns and lots of work_mem 
(sort_mem in 7.4).   This will give the planner the option of a hashaggregate 
which could be significantly faster than the other methods.

Josh Berkus
Aglio Database Solutions
San Francisco

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