A database has been required in the backend of any software or web application as persistent storage. However, the increased number of transactions per second and the amount of data saved necessitates a robust and adaptable architecture for storing and accessing that data.

WHAT IS POSTGRESQL? 

PostgreSQL is a free and open-source Relational Database Management System (RDBMS). Using the JSON (JavaScript Object Notation) format, this open-source and object-oriented platform allows users to deal with both non-relational and relational queries. This platform is suited for managing various workloads, from individual machines to massive Cloud-based Data Warehouses. Furthermore, PostgresQL closely adheres to the specified SQL standards.

Despite being introduced before competitors, database experts still regard the platform as the most popular and dependable DBMS. It offers a variety of extensions, allowing businesses to alter the database to meet their specific needs without harming the primary database.

WHY USE POSTGRESQL, AND WHAT ARE ITS ESSENTIAL FEATURES?

PostgreSQL has a broad range of uses.

  1. Language support:
    PostgreSQL provides a native procedural language PL/PGSQL with several current features. It supports the lightweight JSON data format and assures the flexibility offered in a single package. As a result, PostgreSQL can handle a wide range of programming languages and protocols, including Perl, Ruby, Python,.Net, C/C++, Java, ODBC, and Go.
  2. Open-source:
    One of the most significant advantages of PostgreSQL is that it is free and open source. It has more than 20 years of community development, contributing to its high degree of integrity. The open-source nature of PostgreSQL allows for infinite data storage with no functional limitations. In addition, the source code is accessible under an open-source license, allowing users to change and implement it to meet their needs at no extra cost.
  3. Performance:
    In PostgreSQL, the write operations can be done simultaneously without requiring read and write locks. When dealing with vast amounts of data, indexes speed up searches by allowing databases to discover a specific row without shuffling around all the data. In addition, users of PostgreSQL may design expression indexes that work on the result of an expression or a function rather than the value of a column. Partial indexing is also supported, in which only a portion of the table is indexed. It also allows parallelization of reading queries, Just-in-time (JIT) compilation of expressions, and layered transactions (through savepoints), all of which provide great performance and efficiency.
  4. Extensibility:
    PostgreSQL is very extensible because of its catalog-driven operation, in which information is saved in databases, columns, tables, and so on. PostgreSQL catalogs include more information and specifics on data types, access methods, functions, etc. You may also create data types and write scripts in multiple programming languages without recompiling your database.
  5. Reliability:
    In addition to securely storing data and letting users receive it after the request is processed, PostgreSQL is supported by a community of contributors who continually uncover flaws and work to improve the software, making PostgreSQL dependable.
  6. Load balancing capability:
    Through standby server operation, continuous planning, preparing the primary for backup servers, setting up a standby server, streaming replication, replication slots, cascade replication, and continual archiving in standby, it ensures high availability and load balancing. Furthermore, PostgreSQL provides synchronous replication, which allows two database instances to operate concurrently and synchronizes the master database with a slave database simultaneously, ensuring high availability.
  7. Scalability:
    PostgreSQL supports Unicode, international character sets multi-byte character encodings, and is locale-aware for sorting, case sensitivity, and formatting. Postgres has tremendous scalability and can handle massive amounts of data. The fundamental role of this platform is that it can operate on various operating systems, such as LINUX, Microsoft Windows, OS X, FreeBSD, and Solaris.
  8. Integrations:
    PostgreSQL is simple to use since it supports several programming languages such as C, C++, Phyton, Java, and others.
  9. Dynamic loading:
    Through dynamic loading, the PostgreSQL server can also incorporate user-written code. The user can also define an object code file, such as a shared object code file, that can implement a new function or type, and PostgreSQL will load it as needed. Given its unique flexibility to adjust its action on the file, it is well suited for quickly building new storage structures and applications.
  10. No-vendor Lock-in:
    PostgreSQL has a multitude of businesses that provide Postgres services due to its open data-sharing policy. This avoids the possibility of vendor lock-in.
  11. Multiversion concurrency Control:
    A crucial PostgreSQL feature, especially for large enterprises. You can offer several users concurrent access to a shared database and deploy read-and-write operations with multi-version concurrency management.

WHAT IS HA?

The capacity of a system to run continuously without failure for a specific period is referred to as high availability. HA works to ensure that a system performs at an agreed-upon operational level. The five-nines availability standard, which is frequently used but difficult to attain, states that the product or system is available 99.999% of the time. This may be accomplished by combining a few elements:

  • Server clusters:
    Data is copied over numerous nodes in server clusters for redundancy, similar to a redundant array of separate drives (RAID). If a VPS instance fails on the primary node, it is restarted on the next available node.
  • Load balancers:
    Load balancers, either software or hardware, use methods such as round-robin domain name system (DNS) and server response time to determine which node is the quickest and most dependable at the time to handle a request.
  • Network configuration:
    An advanced network structure enables many load balancers to communicate uptime statistics with one another, mitigating the risks associated with hardware failure and software difficulties.

HOW DOES POSTGRESQL SUPPORT HA?

The measure of a system’s resilience in the event of infrastructure failure is contained in PostgreSQL High Availability. PostgreSQL ensures the high availability of its clusters by providing that if the primary server fails, a standby server will take over.

The significance of PostgreSQL’s High Availability is that it assures that a server or system loss has no long-term impact. Furthermore, it forces you to monitor and manage the health of backend servers. Finally, in the case of an unexpected failure, PostgreSQL High Availability assures that failover is automatic and that all resources are geographically distributed.

POSTGRESQL HA  ARCHITECTURE

PostgreSQL can be configured in multiple ways to support High Availability (HA). Check out our previous article on ‘Deploy PostgreSQL HA on Kubernetes‘ to learn more about PostgreSQL HA deployments and architecture.

SETTING UP POSTGRESQL HA

If you are interested to learn more about “how to set up PostgreSQL HA?” Here is a workshop on ‘Learn to deploy PostgreSQL HA on Kubernetes Clusters in 60 mins‘. 

About The Author

PostgreSQL HA on Kubernetes, CLOUDCONTROL

Rejith Krishnan

Rejith Krishnan is the co-founder and CEO of CloudControl, a startup that provides SRE-as-a-Service. He’s also a thought leader and Kubernetes evangelist who loves to code in Python. When he’s not working or spending time with his two boys, Rejith enjoys hiking in the New England outdoors, biking, kayaking, and playing tennis.