Chunks Storage

The chunks storage is a Cortex storage engine which stores each single time series into a separate object called chunk. Each chunk contains the samples for a given period (defaults to 12 hours). Chunks are then indexed by time range and labels, in order to provide a fast lookup across many (over millions) chunks. For this reason, the Cortex chunks storage requires two backend storages: a key-value store for the index and an object store for the chunks.

The supported backends for the index store are:

The supported backends for the chunks store are:

Storage versioning

The chunks storage is based on a custom data format. The chunks and index format are versioned: this allows Cortex operators to upgrade the cluster to take advantage of new features and improvements. This strategy enables changes in the storage format without requiring any downtime or complex procedures to rewrite the stored data. A set of schemas are used to map the version while reading and writing time series belonging to a specific period of time.

The current schema recommendation is the v9 schema for most use cases and v10 schema if you expect to have very high cardinality metrics (v11 is still experimental). For more information about the schema, please check out the schema configuration.


The following step-by-step guides can help you setting up Cortex running with the chunks storage:

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