CENTOS Postgres pg_upgrade 9 to 11 – In Place – Link – No Copy – Limited Disk Space

I wanted to share my experience with upgrading postgres database server from major version 9 to 11. I am showing the steps that I took to get many servers in dev and production upgraded with limited disk space(not enough space to copy). I am hoping this will help with the problems I faced when testing this procedure. Using the –link parameter has drawbacks as noted in the documentation, however we perform full VM backups of each server so we can always restore from backup if the upgrade fails and we will not need to start the pg9.3 database again.



use hard links instead of copying files to the new cluster
If you ran pg_upgrade with --link, the data files are shared between the old and new cluster. If you started the new cluster, the new server has written to those shared files and it is unsafe to use the old cluster.

Before we get started make a backup of the files pg_hba.conf and postgresql.conf for later use, you will need to use them later to reconstruct the pg11 configs.

Use WGET to grab the RPMS from https://yum.postgresql.org

Install the RPMS for postgres11 that we just downloaded

We will create the data location for postgres11 where the files will be hardlinked and not copied. You can see the tablespace disk locations and the index locations from the pg9.3 install. Its important to create the new pg11 data directory on the same filesystem since we will be using the –link parameter and it uses hardlinks which will not traverse filesystems.

We will need to init a postgres database in our new location on disk data11.

Now we are ready to stop pg9.3 and check pg_upgrade compatibility. pg_upgrade ships with a –check argument that will check the compatibility of the clusters and be sure the upgrade will work before changing any files. Lets stop pg9.3 and run the pg_upgrade with the –check parameter.

Ok checks have passed and the cluster versions are ready for upgrade, lets run this without the –check parameter and upgrade postgres.

OK the pg_upgrade code completed successfully and has generated 2 scripts. One to analyze the new pg11 cluster to get stats for the query planner and vacuum. The other to cleanup and remove the old pg9.3 locations on disk. Let’s start pg11, we will need to create an override file to tell pg11 where the data11 data lives, then we should be able to start postgres and check some things and verify our upgrade.

OK we can see we have pg11 running and we can run the generated scripts to cleanup, but lets take a look at the data and index directories to see what the upgrade produced.

We can view the shell scripts that pg_upgrade produced and cleanup the old pg9.3 references and run the analyze vacuums.

This looks good, lets execute them and cleanup any pg9.3 references as well as remove the pg9.3 rpms.

You can now view the pg_hba.conf and postgresql.conf you saved in /root and add whats needed to the new pg11 configs.

That’s it!!