Re: trying again to get incremental backup

From: Andres Freund <andres(at)anarazel(dot)de>
To: Robert Haas <robertmhaas(at)gmail(dot)com>
Cc: "pgsql-hackers(at)postgresql(dot)org" <pgsql-hackers(at)postgresql(dot)org>
Subject: Re: trying again to get incremental backup
Date: 2023-06-19 15:51:51
Views: Raw Message | Whole Thread | Download mbox | Resend email
Lists: pgsql-hackers


On 2023-06-19 09:46:12 -0400, Robert Haas wrote:
> On Wed, Jun 14, 2023 at 4:40 PM Andres Freund <andres(at)anarazel(dot)de> wrote:
> > > But I'm not sure that's a great approach, because that LSN gap might be
> > > large and then we're duplicating a lot of work that the summarizer has
> > > probably already done most of.
> >
> > I guess that really depends on what the summary granularity is. If you create
> > a separate summary every 32MB or so, recomputing just the required range
> > shouldn't be too bad.
> Yeah, but I don't think that's the right approach, for two reasons.
> First, one of the things I'm rather worried about is what happens when
> the WAL distance between the prior backup and the incremental backup
> is large. It could be a terabyte. If we have a WAL summary for every
> 32MB of WAL, that's 32k files we have to read, and I'm concerned
> that's too many. Maybe it isn't, but it's something that has really
> been weighing on my mind as I've been thinking through the design
> questions here.

It doesn't have to be a separate file - you could easily summarize ranges
at a higher granularity, storing multiple ranges into a single file with a
coarser naming pattern.

> The files are really very small, and having to open a bazillion tiny little
> files to get the job done sounds lame. Second, I don't see what problem it
> actually solves. Why not just signal the summarizer to write out the
> accumulated data to a file instead of re-doing the work ourselves? Or else
> adopt the WAL-record-at-the-redo-pointer approach, and then the whole thing
> is moot?

The one point for a relatively grainy summarization scheme that I see is that
it would pave the way for using the WAL summary data for other purposes in the
future. That could be done orthogonal to the other solutions to the redo
pointer issues.

Other potential use cases:

- only restore parts of a base backup that aren't going to be overwritten by
WAL replay
- reconstructing database contents from WAL after data loss
- more efficient pg_rewind
- more efficient prefetching during WAL replay


Andres Freund

In response to


Browse pgsql-hackers by date

  From Date Subject
Next Message Schoemans Maxime 2023-06-19 16:26:09 Re: Implement missing join selectivity estimation for range types
Previous Message Robert Haas 2023-06-19 13:46:12 Re: trying again to get incremental backup