What is Metadata?

In Information Technology, the prefix “meta” often refers to a basic or underlying description or definition. Simply put, metadata is data about data. By summarizing simple, often descriptive data information, it creates an easier path to finding and using more detailed data.

In a data warehouse, metadata defines warehouse objects and functions as a directory to help locate data warehouse content. It is usually divided into three distinct types or sets: operational, technical, and business data.

The Snowflake META Store

Snowflake has used open source FoundationDB as its meta store since 2014 and has helped develop the open source, distributed, and transactional store ever since. With FoundationDB, Snowflake has an extremely reliable store as a key part of its architecture, allowing the cloud data warehouse to handle multiple versions of objects concurrently.