14th September 2023: PostgreSQL 16 Released!
Supported Versions: Current (16)
Development Versions: devel

74.4. Two-Phase Transactions #

PostgreSQL supports a two-phase commit (2PC) protocol that allows multiple distributed systems to work together in a transactional manner. The commands are PREPARE TRANSACTION, COMMIT PREPARED and ROLLBACK PREPARED. Two-phase transactions are intended for use by external transaction management systems. PostgreSQL follows the features and model proposed by the X/Open XA standard, but does not implement some less often used aspects.

When the user executes PREPARE TRANSACTION, the only possible next commands are COMMIT PREPARED or ROLLBACK PREPARED. In general, this prepared state is intended to be of very short duration, but external availability issues might mean transactions stay in this state for an extended interval. Short-lived prepared transactions are stored only in shared memory and WAL. Transactions that span checkpoints are recorded in the pg_twophase directory. Transactions that are currently prepared can be inspected using pg_prepared_xacts.

Submit correction

If you see anything in the documentation that is not correct, does not match your experience with the particular feature or requires further clarification, please use this form to report a documentation issue.