> Tom Lane wrote:
>> Andrew Dunstan <andrew(at)dunslane(dot)net> writes:
>>> Tom Lane wrote:
>>>> There is an unfinished TODO item here: we really ought to make it work
>>>> for tar-format archives. That's probably not hugely difficult, but
>>>> I didn't look into it, and don't think we should hold up applying the
>>>> existing patch for it.
>>> Right. Were you thinking this should be done for 8.4?
>> If you have time to look into it, sure. Otherwise we should just put it
>> on the TODO list.
> I've had a look at this. If our tar code supported out of order
> restoration(using fseeko) I'd be done. But it doesn't, and I won't get
> that done for 8.4, if at all. I'm not sure what would be involved in
> making it work.
OK, I've spent some more time on this. pg_dump when writing a custom
format file writes out the header and table of contents and then the
data members, keeping track of where each one starts. If the output is
seekable (as it usually is) it then rewrites the table of contents, this
time including the data member offsets. Parallel restore requires that
this offset info be available, and if the pg_dump output file was not
seekable by pg_dump (e.g. if it was a pipe) then it will be unsuitable
for use with parallel restore, which will fail.
In the case of tar output, pg_dump doesn't make any effort to keep the
offset info at all, so parallel restore is not currently suitable for
use with tar output, regardless of whether or not the pg_dump output was
I think we could cure both of these cases by having pg_dump write out a
second copy of the table of contents, including data member offsets, at
the end of the archive. Or it might just be a table of <data-member-id,
offset> pairs if we're worried about space. In the latter case we'd need
to go back and fix up the TOC, but that would be fairly simple. Either
way I think we'd need to bump the archive version number so we'd know
when to expect this.
Once we have that the custom format code should fail on this no matter
how the dump was made, and parallel restore should work with tar format
once we add code to it to seek for data members.
I think all of this can wait to 8.5, except that we should possibly
document a bit more completely the current limitations on parallel restore.
(I was initially tempted to say we'd need compression of individual data
members in tar format to do this sanely, but since the
offsets-at-the-end suggestion should work even when pg_dump is
outputting to a pipe, we'd still be able to send the output through gzip
and so get a conventional .tgz file.)
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