There are a few routine maintenance chores that must be performed on
a regular basis to keep a PostgreSQL
installation running smoothly. The tasks discussed here are repetitive
in nature and can easily be automated using standard Unix tools such
as cron scripts. But it is the database
administrator's responsibility to set up appropriate scripts, and to
check that they execute successfully.
One obvious maintenance task is creation of backup copies of the data on a
regular schedule. Without a recent backup, you have no chance of recovery
after a catastrophe (disk failure, fire, mistakenly dropping a critical
table, etc). The backup and recovery mechanisms available in
PostgreSQL are discussed at length in
The other main category of maintenance task is periodic "vacuuming"
of the database. This activity is discussed in
Something else that might need periodic attention is log file management.
This is discussed in Section 8.4.
PostgreSQL is low-maintenance compared to
some other database products. Nonetheless, appropriate attention to
these tasks will go far towards ensuring a pleasant and productive
experience with the system.