Dataset locations

This page explains the concept of data location and the different locations where you can create datasets. To learn how to set the location for your dataset, see Creating datasets.

For information on regional pricing for BigQuery, see the Pricing page.

Key concepts

Locations or region types

There are two types of locations:

  • A region is a specific geographic place, such as London.

  • A multi-region is a large geographic area, such as the United States, that contains two or more geographic places.

Dataset location

You specify a location for storing your BigQuery data when you create a dataset. After you create the dataset, the location cannot be changed, but you can copy the dataset to a different location, or manually move (recreate) the dataset in a different location.

BigQuery processes queries in the same location as the dataset that contains the tables you're querying.

BigQuery stores your data in the selected location in accordance with the Service Specific Terms.

Supported regions

Regional locations

Region description Region name
Americas
Las Vegas us-west4
Los Angeles us-west2
Montréal northamerica-northeast1
Northern Virginia us-east4
Oregon us-west1
Salt Lake City us-west3
São Paulo southamerica-east1
South Carolina us-east1
Europe
Belgium europe-west1
Finland europe-north1
Frankfurt europe-west3
London europe-west2
Netherlands europe-west4
Zürich europe-west6
Asia Pacific
Hong Kong asia-east2
Jakarta asia-southeast2
Mumbai asia-south1
Osaka asia-northeast2
Seoul asia-northeast3
Singapore asia-southeast1
Sydney australia-southeast1
Taiwan asia-east1
Tokyo asia-northeast1

Multi-regional locations

Multi-region description Multi-region name
Data centers within member states of the European Union1 EU
Data centers in the United States US

1 Data located in the EU multi-region is not stored in the europe-west2 (London) or europe-west6 (Zürich) data centers.

Specifying your location

When loading data, querying data, or exporting data, BigQuery determines the location to run the job based on the datasets referenced in the request. For example, if a query references a table in a dataset stored in the asia-northeast1 region, the query job will run in that region. If a query does not reference any tables or other resources contained within datasets, and no destination table is provided, the query job will run in the US region. If the project has a flat-rate reservation in a region other than the US and the query does not reference any tables or other resources contained within datasets, then you must explicitly specify the location of the flat-rate reservation when submitting the job.

You can specify the location to run a job explicitly in the following ways:

  • When you query data using the Cloud Console, click More > Query settings, and for Processing Location, click Auto-select and choose your data's location.
  • When you use the bq command-line tool, supply the --location global flag and set the value to your location.
  • When you use the API, specify your region in the location property in the jobReference section of the job resource.

BigQuery returns an error if the specified location does not match the location of the datasets in the request.

Location considerations

When you choose a location for your data, consider the following:

  • Colocate your BigQuery dataset and your external data source.
    • When you query data in an external data source such as Cloud Storage, the data you're querying must be in the same location as your BigQuery dataset. For example, if your BigQuery dataset is in the EU multi-regional location, the Cloud Storage bucket containing the data you're querying must be in a multi-regional bucket in the EU. If your dataset is in the US multi-regional location, your Cloud Storage bucket must be in a multi-regional bucket in the US.
    • If your dataset is in a regional location, the Cloud Storage bucket containing the data you're querying must be in a regional bucket in the same location. For example, if your dataset is in the Tokyo region, your Cloud Storage bucket must be a regional bucket in Tokyo.
    • If your external dataset is in Cloud Bigtable, your dataset must be in the US or the EU multi-regional location. Your Cloud Bigtable data must be in one of the supported Cloud Bigtable locations.
    • Location considerations do not apply to Google Drive external data sources.
  • Colocate your Cloud Storage buckets for loading data.
    • If your BigQuery dataset is in a multi-regional location, the Cloud Storage bucket containing the data you're loading must be in a regional or multi-regional bucket in the same location. For example, if your BigQuery dataset is in the EU, the Cloud Storage bucket must be in a regional or multi-regional bucket in the EU.
    • If your dataset is in a regional location, your Cloud Storage bucket must be a regional bucket in the same location. For example, if your dataset is in the Tokyo region, your Cloud Storage bucket must be a regional bucket in Tokyo.
    • Exception: If your dataset is in the US multi-regional location, you can load data from a Cloud Storage bucket in any regional or multi-regional location.
  • Colocate your Cloud Storage buckets for exporting data.
    • When you export data, the regional or multi-regional Cloud Storage bucket must be in the same location as the BigQuery dataset. For example, if your BigQuery dataset is in the EU multi-regional location, the Cloud Storage bucket containing the data you're exporting must be in a regional or multi-regional location in the EU.
    • If your dataset is in a regional location, your Cloud Storage bucket must be a regional bucket in the same location. For example, if your dataset is in the Tokyo region, your Cloud Storage bucket must be a regional bucket in Tokyo.
    • Exception: If your dataset is in the US multi-regional location, you can export data into a Cloud Storage bucket in any regional or multi-regional location.
  • Develop a data management plan.

For more information on Cloud Storage locations, see Bucket locations in the Cloud Storage documentation.

Moving BigQuery data between locations

You cannot change the location of a dataset after it is created, but you can make a copy of the dataset. You cannot move a dataset from one location to another, but you can manually move (recreate) a dataset. The BigQuery Data Transfer Service can transfer data to a BigQuery dataset in many regions.

Copying datasets

To see steps for copying a dataset, including across regions, see Copying datasets.

Moving a dataset

To manually move a dataset from one location to another, follow this process:

  1. Export the data from your BigQuery tables to a regional or multi-region Cloud Storage bucket in the same location as your dataset. For example, if your dataset is in the EU multi-region location, export your data into a regional or multi-region bucket in the EU.

    There are no charges for exporting data from BigQuery, but you do incur charges for storing the exported data in Cloud Storage. BigQuery exports are subject to the limits on export jobs.

  2. Copy or move the data from your Cloud Storage bucket to a regional or multi-region bucket in the new location. For example, if you are moving your data from the US multi-region location to the Tokyo regional location, you would transfer the data to a regional bucket in Tokyo. For information on transferring Cloud Storage objects, see Renaming, copying, and moving objects in the Cloud Storage documentation.

    Note that transferring data between regions incurs network egress charges in Cloud Storage.

  3. After you transfer the data to a Cloud Storage bucket in the new location, create a new BigQuery dataset (in the new location). Then, load your data from the Cloud Storage bucket into BigQuery.

    You are not charged for loading the data into BigQuery, but you will incur charges for storing the data in Cloud Storage until you delete the data or the bucket. You are also charged for storing the data in BigQuery after it is loaded. Loading data into BigQuery is subject to the limits on load jobs.

You can also use Cloud Composer to move and copy large datasets programmatically.

For more information on using Cloud Storage to store and move large datasets, see Using Cloud Storage with big data.

Transferring data into BigQuery datasets

The BigQuery Data Transfer Service transfers (copies) data from a source to a destination dataset in BigQuery. Like BigQuery, the BigQuery Data Transfer Service is a multi-regional resource.

A BigQuery dataset's locality is specified when you create a destination dataset to store the data transferred by the BigQuery Data Transfer Service. When you set up a transfer, the transfer configuration itself is set to the same location as the destination dataset. The BigQuery Data Transfer Service processes and stages data in the same location as the target BigQuery dataset.

The data you want to transfer to BigQuery can also have a region. In most cases, the region where your data is stored and the location of the destination dataset in BigQuery are irrelevant. In other kinds of transfers, the dataset and the source data must be colocated in the same region, or a compatible region.

For detailed information about transfers and region compatibility, see Dataset locations and transfers.

Next steps