Re: BUG #15271: Documentation / Error reporting on GUC parameter change

From: Bruce Momjian <bruce(at)momjian(dot)us>
To: Tom Lane <tgl(at)sss(dot)pgh(dot)pa(dot)us>
Cc: axos88(at)gmail(dot)com, pgsql-bugs(at)lists(dot)postgresql(dot)org
Subject: Re: BUG #15271: Documentation / Error reporting on GUC parameter change
Date: 2018-08-07 19:36:47
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On Tue, Aug 7, 2018 at 03:10:09PM -0400, Tom Lane wrote:
> Bruce Momjian <bruce(at)momjian(dot)us> writes:
> > I looked at this report and the cause seems deeper than reported. The
> > reporter states that having the extension loaded would fix it, but doing
> > the ALTER DATABASE as superuser also fixes it:
> Well, yeah, see guc.c's validate_option_array_item:
> * There are three cases to consider:
> *
> * name is a known GUC variable. Check the value normally, check
> * permissions normally (i.e., allow if variable is USERSET, or if it's
> * SUSET and user is superuser).
> *
> * name is not known, but exists or can be created as a placeholder (i.e.,
> * it has a prefixed name). We allow this case if you're a superuser,
> * otherwise not. Superusers are assumed to know what they're doing. We
> * can't allow it for other users, because when the placeholder is
> * resolved it might turn out to be a SUSET variable;
> * define_custom_variable assumes we checked that.
> *
> * name is not known and can't be created as a placeholder. Throw error,
> * unless skipIfNoPermissions is true, in which case return false.
> AFAICS it's behaving as designed.
> Conceivably we could improve this by extending pg_db_role_setting to track
> whether the assigner of a value was superuser or not, and then deciding
> at value apply time whether to allow the assignment. However, that would
> have downsides of its own, that you might not find out till far distant
> from the mistake that you'd made a mistake.

Great, thanks for the background. It is probably not worth trying to
enhance this further.

Bruce Momjian <bruce(at)momjian(dot)us>

+ As you are, so once was I. As I am, so you will be. +
+ Ancient Roman grave inscription +

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