Queryset are commonly used with Django's ORM. I Didn't Know Querysets Could do That by Charlie Guo is a nice Django Con US 2016 talk that delves deeper into useage of QuerySet.

Following is summary notes of the talk

Basic Queryset method

  • Methods that return QuerySet
    • all
    • filter
    • exclude
    • oder_by
    • reverse
    • distinct
    • annotate
  • Methods that return model instance
    • get
    • first
    • last
    • latest
    • earliest
    • exists
    • count
    • aggregate
  • annotate and aggregate both expect a expression
    • annotate will compute that for each item in the set. Returns each item with new property
    • aggregate will return a dictionary with that value for entire set
    • Django will create property if not provided
    • Tend to be faster than for loops
products = products.annotate(Count('item'))

grand_total = orders.aggregate(Sum('total'))


  • select_related: Allows getting related objects using single query via JOINs.
  • prefetch_related: Similar to select_related will do JOINs in Python
  • defer: Allows to fetch all except specified query
  • only: Allows to fetch selected fields only
  • values: Return dictionaries rather than instances of models
  • values_list: Returns tuples that can be iterated over
  • in_bulk: You pass it list of IDs and returns a dictionary of ID to Model Instance
  • bulk_create: Does the job of creation/insertions in just a single query
  • When you access FK relation django issues a DB query

Conjunction Dysfunctional

When specifying attributes in filter method of QuerySet it generates SQL query with underlying AND construct

How to handle OR queries:

  • QuerySet is different from a list. On list you can't filter on it etc.
  • Q E.g. find all users with certain name keywords
users = User.objects.filter(
    Q(first_name__icontains='kelly') |
    Q(last_name__icontains='kelly') |
  • You can create as complex of an expression as you want with bitwise OR and NOT

Query Arithmetic

F, while Q represented query contraint. F represents an implicit refrence in DB calls

item_sum = Sum(F('unit_price') * F('quantity'))
total = items.aggregate(amount=item_sum).get('amount', 0)

F expressions

They are examples of Django's Query Expressions. This includes:

  • Avg
  • Count
  • Max
  • StdDev
  • Sum
  • Variance
  • Coalesce
  • Concat
  • Greatest
  • Least
  • Length
  • Lower
  • Now
  • Substr
  • Upper

Query expressions also include:

  • F
  • Aggregate
  • Func
  • Value
  • ExpressionWrapper
  • Conditional

Writing custom query expressions, you have to define following methods:

  • as_sql
  • as_
  • get_lookup
  • get_transform
  • output_field

Writing RAW SQLs

If you're writing RAW SQL you should probably rethink what you're about to do

    select={"is_recent": "ordered_at > 2016-01-01"}
  • Other options
    • select
    • where
    • tables
    • order_by
    • select_params
    • params
    SELECT * FROM ...