Quoting David Roussel <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>:

> > COPY invokes all the same logic as INSERT on the server side
> > (rowexclusive locking, transaction log, updating indexes, rules). 
> > The difference is that all the rows are inserted as a single
> > transaction. This reduces the number of fsync's on the xlog,
> > which may be a limiting factor for you. You'll want to crank 
> > WAL_BUFFERS and CHECKPOINT_SEGMENTS to match, though. 
> > One of my streams has 6K records; I run with WB=1000, CS=128.
> So what's the difference between a COPY and a batch of INSERT
> statements.  Also, surely, fsyncs only occur at the end of a
> transaction, no need to fsync before a commit has been issued,
> right?

Sorry, I was comparing granularities the other way araound. As far as
xlog is concerned, a COPY is ALWAYS one big txn, no matter how many
putline commands you use to feed the copy. With inserts, you can choose
whether to commit every row, every nth row, etc.

Copy makes better use of the TCP connection for transmission. COPY uses
the TCP connection like a one-way pipe. INSERT is like an RPC: the
sender has to wait until the insert's return status roundtrips.
Engineers think equations approximate reality.
Physicists think reality approximates the equations.
Mathematicians never make the connection.

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