This documentation is for an older version. If you're using the most current version, select the documentation for that version with the version switch in the upper right corner of the online documentation, or by downloading a newer PDF or EPUB file. Optimizing Spatial Analysis

For MyISAM tables, search operations in columns containing spatial data can be optimized using SPATIAL indexes. The most typical operations are:

MySQL uses R-Trees with quadratic splitting for SPATIAL indexes on spatial columns. A SPATIAL index is built using the minimum bounding rectangle (MBR) of a geometry. For most geometries, the MBR is a minimum rectangle that surrounds the geometries. For a horizontal or a vertical linestring, the MBR is a rectangle degenerated into the linestring. For a point, the MBR is a rectangle degenerated into the point.

It is also possible to create normal indexes on spatial columns. In a non-SPATIAL index, you must declare a prefix for any spatial column except for POINT columns.

MyISAM supports both SPATIAL and non-SPATIAL indexes. Other storage engines support non-SPATIAL indexes, as described in Section 13.1.8, “CREATE INDEX Syntax”.