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Extensions in PostgreSQL 9.1 fixes another pet-peeve

One thing I've really disliked is the fact that contrib modules had installation scripts that enforced the schema to public for the installation. In my opinion, for no useful reason at all.

For example, I often install the pgcrypto contrib module. And I install this in the pgcrypto schema, that I then either add to the search_path variable or just explicitly use in my queries, with things like pcrypto.crypt('foobar','barfoo'). For versions prior to 9.1, being able to do this required me to manually edit the installed pgcrypto.sql file, to remove the SET search_path = public; command.

Extensions in 9.1 makes this so much nicer. To get pgcrypto into it's own schema, I now just need to do:

postgres=# CREATE SCHEMA pgcrypto;
CREATE SCHEMA
postgres=# CREATE EXTENSION pgcrypto SCHEMA pgcrypto;
CREATE EXTENSION

If I happen to create it in public by mistake, I can even move it after the fact!

postgres=# ALTER EXTENSION pgcrypto SET SCHEMA pgcrypto;
ALTER EXTENSION

You still need to create the schema manually - in theory we could auto-create that, but the work is still a lot easier than before. And fully supported!

Remote log reading in PostgreSQL 9.1

PostgreSQL 9.1 beta1 now available - now is a great time to start testing it, and trying out all the great new features.

There have always been a number of ways to read your PostgreSQL logs remotely, over a libpq connection. For example, you can use the pg_read_file() function - which is what pgadmin does. PostgreSQL 9.1 adds a new and more convenient way (in some ways) to do this - using SQL/MED.

PostgreSQL 9.1 comes with SQL standard SQL/MED functionality. The MED in is short for "Managemend of External Data", and as the name sounds, it's about accessing data that's external to the PostgreSQL server. The SQL/MED functionality is not (yet) complete, but it's already very useful in it's current state.

In SQL/MED, there is something called a Foreign Data Wrapper, that can be compared to a driver. Using this FDW, we can create one or more Foreign Servers, which is a definition of how to connect to a specific instance of the service - if any. Finally, we can create one or more Foreign Tables on each of the Foreign Servers, giving us direct access to the remote data using SQL.

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PGDay Chicago 2024
Apr 26, 2024
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Pasadena, USA
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Prague, Czechia
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