On 23 January 2016 at 00:40, Robert Haas <robertmh...@gmail.com> wrote:

> It occurred to me to wonder if it might be better to
> propagate logical slots partially or entirely outside the WAL stream,
> because with this design you will end up with the logical slots on
> every replica, including cascaded replicas, and I'm not sure that's
> what we want.  Then again, I'm also not sure it isn't what we want.

I think it's the most sensible default if there's only going to be one
choice to start with. It's consistent with what we do elsewhere with
replicas so there won't be any surprises.   Failover slots are a fairly
simple feature that IMO just makes slots behave more like you might expect
them to do in the first place.

I'm pretty hesitant to start making cascaded replicas different to each
other just for slots. There are lots of other things where variation
between replicas would be lovely - the most obvious of which is omitting
some databases from some replicas. Right now we have a single data stream,
WAL, that goes to every replica. If we're going to change that I'd really
like to address it in a way that'll meet future needs like selective
physical replication too. I also think we'd want to deal with the problem
of identifying and labeling nodes to do a good job of selective replication
of slots.

I'd like to get failover slots in place for 9.6 since the're fairly
self-contained and meet an immediate need: allowing replication using slots
(physical or logical) to follow a failover event.

After that I want to add logical decoding support for slot
creation/drop/advance. So a logical decoding plugin can mirror logical slot
state on another node. It wouldn't be useful for physical slots, of course,
but it'd allow failover between logical replicas where we can do cool
things like replicate just a subset of DBs/tables/etc. (A mapping of
upstream to downstream LSNs would be required, but hopefully not too hard).
That's post-9.6 work and separate to failover slots, though dependent on
them for the ability to decode slot changes from WAL.

Down the track I'd very much like to be less dependent on forcing
everything though WAL with a single timeline. I agree with Andres that
being able to use failover slots on replicas would be good, and that it's
not possible when we use WAL to track the info. I just think it's a massive
increase in complexity and scope and I'd really like to be able to follow
failover the simple way first, then enhance it.

Nothing stops us changing failover slots in 9.7+ from using WAL to some
other mechanism that we design carefully at that time. We can extend the
walsender command set for physical rep at a major version bump with no
major issues, including adding to the streaming rep protocol. There's lots
to figure out though, including how to maintain slot changes in a strict
ordering with WAL, how to store and read the info, etc.

 Craig Ringer                   http://www.2ndQuadrant.com/
 PostgreSQL Development, 24x7 Support, Training & Services

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