A review of PostgreSQL 9 Administration Cookbook by Riggs and Krosing

PostgreSQL 9 Administration Cookbook. By Simon Riggs and Hannu Krosing, Packt, 2010. Approximately 330 pages.

This is a good book for PostgreSQL database administrators to pick up, especially if you’re new to PostgreSQL but familiar with another system such as Oracle, SQL Server, or MySQL. It has more than 80 “recipes” that range from quick tips to moderately detailed discussion of how to accomplish specific tasks. The chapters and recipes are well organized, and you can either read the book from start to finish or jump to a specific recipe for quick help.

The major topics are introductory/overview, configuration, managing tables and data, security, managing the server itself, monitoring, maintenance, performance, backup and recovery, replication, and upgrades. The chapter list mimics that list pretty well, though I lumped some chapters together in my topic list.

Some of the same topics are covered in much greater detail in Greg Smith’s excellent PostgreSQL 9 High Performance, which I reviewed previously.

On the negative side, I can only remark that the cookbook format in general isn’t my favorite; each “recipe” is quite formulaic, with little sub-headings titled “getting ready, how to do it, how it works, there’s more, see also.” But it works pretty well nonetheless as a quick-reference guide.

Overall worth picking up, unless you’re quite knowledgeable about PostgreSQL already, in which case I wouldn’t expect you to learn much from this book.

I'm Baron Schwartz, the founder and CEO of VividCortex. I am the author of High Performance MySQL and lots of open-source software for performance analysis, monitoring, and system administration. I contribute to various database communities such as Oracle, PostgreSQL, Redis and MongoDB. More about me.