Skip site navigation (1) Skip section navigation (2)

Re: unite recovery.conf and postgresql.conf

From: Fujii Masao <masao(dot)fujii(at)gmail(dot)com>
To: Magnus Hagander <magnus(at)hagander(dot)net>
Cc: PostgreSQL-development <pgsql-hackers(at)postgresql(dot)org>
Subject: Re: unite recovery.conf and postgresql.conf
Date: 2011-09-09 11:15:10
Message-ID: (view raw, whole thread or download thread mbox)
Lists: pgsql-hackers
On Fri, Sep 9, 2011 at 7:21 PM, Magnus Hagander <magnus(at)hagander(dot)net> wrote:
> On Fri, Sep 9, 2011 at 11:56, Fujii Masao <masao(dot)fujii(at)gmail(dot)com> wrote:
>> Hi,
>> In previous discussion, we've reached the consensus that we should unite
>> recovery.conf and postgresql.conf. The attached patch does that. The
>> patch is WIP, I'll have to update the document, but if you notice something,
>> please feel free to comment.
>> This patch allows us to specify recovery parameters like primary_conninfo
>> in postgresql.conf. You can change some of them without restarting
>> the server (i.e., by using "pg_ctl reload") and see the current settings by
>> SHOW command. But note that recovery.conf is still required as a status
>> file for archive recovery and standby server even if you put all the settings
>> in postgresql.conf. Recovery parameters in postgresql.conf only have effect
>> when recovery.conf exists.
> Why exactly do we need to keep recovery.conf in this case?

PostgreSQL automatically reinitializes after a backend crash. Imagine the case
where this happens after archive recovery. Since restore_command is left set
in postgresql.conf and it still has effect (if we've completely removed
recovery.conf), the reinitialization will makes the server go into
archive recovery
mode again unexpectedly.

We can avoid this problem by using recovery.conf. At the end of
archive recovery,
recovery.conf is renamed to recovery.done. So when the reinitialization happens,
recovery.conf doesn't exist and restore_command has no effect. Which prevents
the server from going into archive recovery mode again.

>> For backward compatibility, this patch still allows us to specify recovery
>> parameters in recovery.conf. But, as in past years, you cannot reload
>> recovery.conf and see the current settings by SHOW command. We should
>> recommend to put all the settings in postgresql.conf and empty recovery.conf,
>> but you can also put all recovery parameters in recovery.conf.
> Perhaps we should just have people use recovery.conf as an include
> file in this case?

Yeah, that's my first idea, but I've given up adopting that. The problem is that
recovery.conf is renamed to recovery.done at the end of recovery. This means
that all the settings in recovery.conf are reset when archive recovery ends.
If you run "pg_ctl reload" after archive recovery, you'll get something like the
following error message and the reload will always fail;

    LOG:  parameter "standby_mode" cannot be changed without
restarting the server

> As a whole, I'm not sure I like the idea of having such critical
> parameters in two different places. Do we really need to care about
> the backwards compatibility of something like that this much?

I don't have strong opinion about this. But in previous discussion, Simon argued
that we should.

>> If the same parameter is specified in both file, the setting in recovery.conf
>> overrides that in postgresql.conf. In this case, SHOW command displays
>> the settings in postgresql.conf even though they are not used at all. Even if
> Now, *that* is just broken, IMHO. The SHOW command should show what is
> actually in use, period. Everything is guaranteed to confuse the hell
> out of anybody trying to use it.

I'm afraid that we have to add very complicated code to fix that problem.
Though of course we can easily fix the problem if we don't care about
the backward compatibility.


Fujii Masao
NTT Open Source Software Center

In response to


pgsql-hackers by date

Next:From: Magnus HaganderDate: 2011-09-09 11:27:27
Subject: Re: unite recovery.conf and postgresql.conf
Previous:From: Magnus HaganderDate: 2011-09-09 10:28:18
Subject: Re: WAL "low watermark" during base backup

Privacy Policy | About PostgreSQL
Copyright © 1996-2018 The PostgreSQL Global Development Group