Scaling Database Maintenance

This month we're bringing back the BWPUG with a return to Reston, Virginia.

The Speaker:

Gregory Smith

Gregory Smith is the principal consultant in the United States for international PostgreSQL services firm 2ndQuadrant. Based in Baltimore, MD, he's been providing database advice to clients in industries like manufacturing, finance, and web development for twenty years. Dedicated to open-source technology since early in his career, Greg turned to full-time PostgreSQL work by diving in at the source code level. He contributes regular feature patches to the core database and has written a variety of database tools. Greg authored PostgreSQL 9.0 High Performance which reflects the perspective he's gained over the last few years as one of the most prolific sources of advice on the popular PostgreSQL community mailing lists.

Greg Smith will be presenting a talk on the subject of Scaling Database Maintenance.  It's all new material on this topic that goes beyond the PostgreSQL versions covered in his performance tuning book.

The Topic:

Scaling Database Maintenance

When your database is small, the database's autovacuum background daemon will keep up with the routine maintenance work that tables and indexes need.  Once your database is larger though, and larger typically starts in the 100GB or 100M row range, the automatic maintenance as it's tuned by default won't be good enough.

This talk will introduce what VACUUM and autovacuum do.  Some common manual settings and approaches for larger databases will be outlined.  You'll get a spreadsheet to help with tuning the tricky autovacuum settings.  Finally, re-building indexes with minimal downtime will be outlined, emphasizing techniques introduced in PostgreSQL 9.1 that make that job easier.

The Venue:

This meeting is being hosted with the help of Justin Leto at Nova Labs.  Nova Labs is nonprofit MakerSpace, providing space and tools aimed at education and science.  There is an open house at the MakerSpace after the talk is over.  They will be providing pizza and drinks, along a chance to tour the facility and meet the people who do their work there.

Attendance for this meeting is limited to 20 people.  RSVP as soon as you can to make sure you get a spot and Nova is prepared for the right size group.  If you've ever wanted to talk about PostgreSQL VACUUM and how to build a real vacuum on the same night, this is your chance!

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