Hadoop Ecosystem: SQOOP – The Data Mover

Apache Sqoop Logo

Sqoop Logo

 SQOOP is an open source project hosted by the Apache Foundation whose objective is to provide a tool that will allow users to move large volumes of data in bulk from structured data sources into the Hadoop Distributed File System (HDFS). The project graduated from the Apache Incubator in March of 2012 and it is now a Top-Level Apache project.

The best way to look at Sqoop is as a collection of related tools where each of these sub-modules serves a specific use case such as importing into Hive or leveraging parallelism when reading from a MySQL database. You do specify the tool you are invoking when you use Sqoop. In terms of syntax, each of these tools have a specific set of arguments while supporting global arguments as well.


Below is a list of the most frequently used Sqoop tools as of version 1.4.5 with a brief description of their purpose:


  • Sqoop import: Helps users import a single table into Hadoop
  • Sqoop import-all-tables: Imports all tables in a database schema into Hadoop
  • Sqoop export: Allows users to export a set of files from HDFS back into a relational database
  • Sqoop create-hive-table: Allows users to import relational data directly into Apache Hive

Sqoop: Create-hive-table tool

Apache Sqoop Logo


–table <source_table> : The name of the table on the originating database

— hive-table <target table> :  The name of the table to be created written to into






–mysql-delimiters : ( , ) for fields, ( \n ) for lines, enclosed-by ( ‘ ), escaped-by ( \ )



* The tool will fail if the target table exists