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Re: pgstat SRF?

From: Magnus Hagander <magnus(at)hagander(dot)net>
To: Alvaro Herrera <alvherre(at)alvh(dot)no-ip(dot)org>
Cc: Tom Lane <tgl(at)sss(dot)pgh(dot)pa(dot)us>, pgsql-hackers(at)postgresql(dot)org
Subject: Re: pgstat SRF?
Date: 2008-04-28 14:00:34
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Lists: pgsql-hackers
Magnus Hagander wrote:
> Tom Lane wrote:
> > Magnus Hagander <magnus(at)hagander(dot)net> writes:
> > > While looking over the statistics-for-functions patch
> > > (,
> > > I came back to a thought I've had before - why do we keep one
> > > function per column for pgstat functions, instead of using a set
> > > returning function? Is there some actual reason for this, or is it
> > > just legacy from a time when it was (much) harder to write SRFs?
> > 
> > I think it's so that you can build your own stats views instead of
> > being compelled to select the data someone thought was good for you.
> You can still do that if it's an SRF. You could even make the SRF take
> an optional argument to either return a single value (filtered the
> same way the individual functions are) or when this one is set to
> NULL, return the whole table. 
> It would make the overhead a lot lower in the most common case
> * FROM pg_stat_<somethingorother>"), while only adding a little in the
> other cases, I think.
> Though I'm not sure that overhead is big enough to care about in the
> first place, but if you're VIEWs are longish it could be...

Actually, looking at this once more, the interface to the functions
sucked more than I thought. They're not actually accepting procpid as
parameters, but just an index into the current array in pgstats..
Basically, they're not supposed to be used in any other way than
accessing all the rows at once :-)

Attached is a version of the functions required for pg_stat_activity
implemented as a SRF instead of different functions. A quick benchmark
(grabbing the VIEW 10,000 times on a system with about 500 active
backends) shows it's about 20% faster than the function-per-value
approach, but the runtime per view is still very quick as it is today.
(And most of what overhead there is most likely comes from reading the
stats file)

However, it also implements the lookup-by-PID functionality that IMHO
makes a lot more sense than lookup-by-backend-array-index. This is
obviously a lot more performant than querying the VIEW for all rows -
something that might be a big win for monitoring apps that look for
info about a single backend.

Unsure if we want to go ahead and convert all functions, but I think we
can make a good argument for making *new* stats views (like the ones
about functions that in the queue) based on SRFs instead. It also has
the nice side-effect of less rows in the system tables ;)



Attachment: pgstat.diff
Description: text/x-patch (8.6 KB)

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