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I created a table:

CREATE TABLE foo (
    id integer primary key,
    bar integer NOT NULL
);

and inserted one row:

INSERT INTO foo (id, bar) VALUES (1, 1);

and ran a pgbench of the following simple update statement.

script.txt:

update foo set bar=bar+1 where id=1

pgbench result:

C:\my-temp>"c:\Program Files\PostgreSQL\9.3\bin\pgbench.exe" -U postgres -c 1 -t 10000 -n -f script.txt testdb
Password:
transaction type: Custom query
scaling factor: 1
query mode: simple
number of clients: 1
number of threads: 1
number of transactions per client: 10000
number of transactions actually processed: 10000/10000
tps = 2052.384567 (including connections establishing)
tps = 2058.699883 (excluding connections establishing)

Given that it's serially executing transactions, this tps result seems to be too high for my system:

OS: Windows 8
CPU: Intel Core i3-2100 3.10GHz
RAM: 4GB
Disk: SATA II 7200 rpm
PostgreSQL: 9.3

I haven't changed the default settings, so fsync and synchronous_commit options should be both on.

Here is my postgresql.conf:

# -----------------------------
# PostgreSQL configuration file
# -----------------------------
#
# This file consists of lines of the form:
#
#   name = value
#
# (The "=" is optional.)  Whitespace may be used.  Comments are introduced with
# "#" anywhere on a line.  The complete list of parameter names and allowed
# values can be found in the PostgreSQL documentation.
#
# The commented-out settings shown in this file represent the default values.
# Re-commenting a setting is NOT sufficient to revert it to the default value;
# you need to reload the server.
#
# This file is read on server startup and when the server receives a SIGHUP
# signal.  If you edit the file on a running system, you have to SIGHUP the
# server for the changes to take effect, or use "pg_ctl reload".  Some
# parameters, which are marked below, require a server shutdown and restart to
# take effect.
#
# Any parameter can also be given as a command-line option to the server, e.g.,
# "postgres -c log_connections=on".  Some parameters can be changed at run time
# with the "SET" SQL command.
#
# Memory units:  kB = kilobytes        Time units:  ms  = milliseconds
#                MB = megabytes                     s   = seconds
#                GB = gigabytes                     min = minutes
#                                                   h   = hours
#                                                   d   = days


#------------------------------------------------------------------------------
# FILE LOCATIONS
#------------------------------------------------------------------------------

# The default values of these variables are driven from the -D command-line
# option or PGDATA environment variable, represented here as ConfigDir.

#data_directory = 'ConfigDir'       # use data in another directory
                    # (change requires restart)
#hba_file = 'ConfigDir/pg_hba.conf' # host-based authentication file
                    # (change requires restart)
#ident_file = 'ConfigDir/pg_ident.conf' # ident configuration file
                    # (change requires restart)

# If external_pid_file is not explicitly set, no extra PID file is written.
#external_pid_file = ''         # write an extra PID file
                    # (change requires restart)


#------------------------------------------------------------------------------
# CONNECTIONS AND AUTHENTICATION
#------------------------------------------------------------------------------

# - Connection Settings -

listen_addresses = '*'      # what IP address(es) to listen on;
                    # comma-separated list of addresses;
                    # defaults to 'localhost'; use '*' for all
                    # (change requires restart)
port = 5432             # (change requires restart)
max_connections = 100           # (change requires restart)
# Note:  Increasing max_connections costs ~400 bytes of shared memory per
# connection slot, plus lock space (see max_locks_per_transaction).
#superuser_reserved_connections = 3 # (change requires restart)
#unix_socket_directories = ''   # comma-separated list of directories
                    # (change requires restart)
#unix_socket_group = ''         # (change requires restart)
#unix_socket_permissions = 0777     # begin with 0 to use octal notation
                    # (change requires restart)
#bonjour = off              # advertise server via Bonjour
                    # (change requires restart)
#bonjour_name = ''          # defaults to the computer name
                    # (change requires restart)

# - Security and Authentication -

#authentication_timeout = 1min      # 1s-600s
#ssl = off              # (change requires restart)
#ssl_ciphers = 'DEFAULT:!LOW:!EXP:!MD5:@STRENGTH'   # allowed SSL ciphers
                    # (change requires restart)
#ssl_renegotiation_limit = 512MB    # amount of data between renegotiations
#ssl_cert_file = 'server.crt'       # (change requires restart)
#ssl_key_file = 'server.key'        # (change requires restart)
#ssl_ca_file = ''           # (change requires restart)
#ssl_crl_file = ''          # (change requires restart)
#password_encryption = on
#db_user_namespace = off

# Kerberos and GSSAPI
#krb_server_keyfile = ''
#krb_srvname = 'postgres'       # (Kerberos only)
#krb_caseins_users = off

# - TCP Keepalives -
# see "man 7 tcp" for details

#tcp_keepalives_idle = 0        # TCP_KEEPIDLE, in seconds;
                    # 0 selects the system default
#tcp_keepalives_interval = 0        # TCP_KEEPINTVL, in seconds;
                    # 0 selects the system default
#tcp_keepalives_count = 0       # TCP_KEEPCNT;
                    # 0 selects the system default


#------------------------------------------------------------------------------
# RESOURCE USAGE (except WAL)
#------------------------------------------------------------------------------

# - Memory -

shared_buffers = 128MB          # min 128kB
                    # (change requires restart)
#temp_buffers = 8MB         # min 800kB
#max_prepared_transactions = 0      # zero disables the feature
                    # (change requires restart)
# Note:  Increasing max_prepared_transactions costs ~600 bytes of shared memory
# per transaction slot, plus lock space (see max_locks_per_transaction).
# It is not advisable to set max_prepared_transactions nonzero unless you
# actively intend to use prepared transactions.
#work_mem = 1MB             # min 64kB
#maintenance_work_mem = 16MB        # min 1MB
#max_stack_depth = 2MB          # min 100kB

# - Disk -

#temp_file_limit = -1           # limits per-session temp file space
                    # in kB, or -1 for no limit

# - Kernel Resource Usage -

#max_files_per_process = 1000       # min 25
                    # (change requires restart)
#shared_preload_libraries = ''      # (change requires restart)

# - Cost-Based Vacuum Delay -

#vacuum_cost_delay = 0          # 0-100 milliseconds
#vacuum_cost_page_hit = 1       # 0-10000 credits
#vacuum_cost_page_miss = 10     # 0-10000 credits
#vacuum_cost_page_dirty = 20        # 0-10000 credits
#vacuum_cost_limit = 200        # 1-10000 credits

# - Background Writer -

#bgwriter_delay = 200ms         # 10-10000ms between rounds
#bgwriter_lru_maxpages = 100        # 0-1000 max buffers written/round
#bgwriter_lru_multiplier = 2.0      # 0-10.0 multipler on buffers scanned/round

# - Asynchronous Behavior -

#effective_io_concurrency = 1       # 1-1000; 0 disables prefetching


#------------------------------------------------------------------------------
# WRITE AHEAD LOG
#------------------------------------------------------------------------------

# - Settings -

#wal_level = minimal            # minimal, archive, or hot_standby
                    # (change requires restart)
#fsync = on             # turns forced synchronization on or off
#synchronous_commit = on        # synchronization level;
                    # off, local, remote_write, or on
#wal_sync_method = fsync        # the default is the first option
                    # supported by the operating system:
                    #   open_datasync
                    #   fdatasync (default on Linux)
                    #   fsync
                    #   fsync_writethrough
                    #   open_sync
#full_page_writes = on          # recover from partial page writes
#wal_buffers = -1           # min 32kB, -1 sets based on shared_buffers
                    # (change requires restart)
#wal_writer_delay = 200ms       # 1-10000 milliseconds

#commit_delay = 0           # range 0-100000, in microseconds
#commit_siblings = 5            # range 1-1000

# - Checkpoints -

#checkpoint_segments = 3        # in logfile segments, min 1, 16MB each
#checkpoint_timeout = 5min      # range 30s-1h
#checkpoint_completion_target = 0.5 # checkpoint target duration, 0.0 - 1.0
#checkpoint_warning = 30s       # 0 disables

# - Archiving -

#archive_mode = off     # allows archiving to be done
                # (change requires restart)
#archive_command = ''       # command to use to archive a logfile segment
                # placeholders: %p = path of file to archive
                #               %f = file name only
                # e.g. 'test ! -f /mnt/server/archivedir/%f && cp %p /mnt/server/archivedir/%f'
#archive_timeout = 0        # force a logfile segment switch after this
                # number of seconds; 0 disables


#------------------------------------------------------------------------------
# REPLICATION
#------------------------------------------------------------------------------

# - Sending Server(s) -

# Set these on the master and on any standby that will send replication data.

#max_wal_senders = 0        # max number of walsender processes
                # (change requires restart)
#wal_keep_segments = 0      # in logfile segments, 16MB each; 0 disables
#wal_sender_timeout = 60s   # in milliseconds; 0 disables

# - Master Server -

# These settings are ignored on a standby server.

#synchronous_standby_names = '' # standby servers that provide sync rep
                # comma-separated list of application_name
                # from standby(s); '*' = all
#vacuum_defer_cleanup_age = 0   # number of xacts by which cleanup is delayed

# - Standby Servers -

# These settings are ignored on a master server.

#hot_standby = off          # "on" allows queries during recovery
                    # (change requires restart)
#max_standby_archive_delay = 30s    # max delay before canceling queries
                    # when reading WAL from archive;
                    # -1 allows indefinite delay
#max_standby_streaming_delay = 30s  # max delay before canceling queries
                    # when reading streaming WAL;
                    # -1 allows indefinite delay
#wal_receiver_status_interval = 10s # send replies at least this often
                    # 0 disables
#hot_standby_feedback = off     # send info from standby to prevent
                    # query conflicts
#wal_receiver_timeout = 60s     # time that receiver waits for
                    # communication from master
                    # in milliseconds; 0 disables


#------------------------------------------------------------------------------
# QUERY TUNING
#------------------------------------------------------------------------------

# - Planner Method Configuration -

#enable_bitmapscan = on
#enable_hashagg = on
#enable_hashjoin = on
#enable_indexscan = on
#enable_indexonlyscan = on
#enable_material = on
#enable_mergejoin = on
#enable_nestloop = on
#enable_seqscan = on
#enable_sort = on
#enable_tidscan = on

# - Planner Cost Constants -

#seq_page_cost = 1.0            # measured on an arbitrary scale
#random_page_cost = 4.0         # same scale as above
#cpu_tuple_cost = 0.01          # same scale as above
#cpu_index_tuple_cost = 0.005       # same scale as above
#cpu_operator_cost = 0.0025     # same scale as above
#effective_cache_size = 128MB

# - Genetic Query Optimizer -

#geqo = on
#geqo_threshold = 12
#geqo_effort = 5            # range 1-10
#geqo_pool_size = 0         # selects default based on effort
#geqo_generations = 0           # selects default based on effort
#geqo_selection_bias = 2.0      # range 1.5-2.0
#geqo_seed = 0.0            # range 0.0-1.0

# - Other Planner Options -

#default_statistics_target = 100    # range 1-10000
#constraint_exclusion = partition   # on, off, or partition
#cursor_tuple_fraction = 0.1        # range 0.0-1.0
#from_collapse_limit = 8
#join_collapse_limit = 8        # 1 disables collapsing of explicit
                    # JOIN clauses


#------------------------------------------------------------------------------
# ERROR REPORTING AND LOGGING
#------------------------------------------------------------------------------

# - Where to Log -

log_destination = 'stderr'      # Valid values are combinations of
                    # stderr, csvlog, syslog, and eventlog,
                    # depending on platform.  csvlog
                    # requires logging_collector to be on.

# This is used when logging to stderr:
logging_collector = on      # Enable capturing of stderr and csvlog
                    # into log files. Required to be on for
                    # csvlogs.
                    # (change requires restart)

# These are only used if logging_collector is on:
#log_directory = 'pg_log'       # directory where log files are written,
                    # can be absolute or relative to PGDATA
#log_filename = 'postgresql-%Y-%m-%d_%H%M%S.log'    # log file name pattern,
                    # can include strftime() escapes
#log_file_mode = 0600           # creation mode for log files,
                    # begin with 0 to use octal notation
#log_truncate_on_rotation = off     # If on, an existing log file with the
                    # same name as the new log file will be
                    # truncated rather than appended to.
                    # But such truncation only occurs on
                    # time-driven rotation, not on restarts
                    # or size-driven rotation.  Default is
                    # off, meaning append to existing files
                    # in all cases.
#log_rotation_age = 1d          # Automatic rotation of logfiles will
                    # happen after that time.  0 disables.
#log_rotation_size = 10MB       # Automatic rotation of logfiles will
                    # happen after that much log output.
                    # 0 disables.

# These are relevant when logging to syslog:
#syslog_facility = 'LOCAL0'
#syslog_ident = 'postgres'

# This is only relevant when logging to eventlog (win32):
#event_source = 'PostgreSQL'

# - When to Log -

#client_min_messages = notice       # values in order of decreasing detail:
                    #   debug5
                    #   debug4
                    #   debug3
                    #   debug2
                    #   debug1
                    #   log
                    #   notice
                    #   warning
                    #   error

#log_min_messages = warning     # values in order of decreasing detail:
                    #   debug5
                    #   debug4
                    #   debug3
                    #   debug2
                    #   debug1
                    #   info
                    #   notice
                    #   warning
                    #   error
                    #   log
                    #   fatal
                    #   panic

#log_min_error_statement = error    # values in order of decreasing detail:
                    #   debug5
                    #   debug4
                    #   debug3
                    #   debug2
                    #   debug1
                    #   info
                    #   notice
                    #   warning
                    #   error
                    #   log
                    #   fatal
                    #   panic (effectively off)

#log_min_duration_statement = -1    # -1 is disabled, 0 logs all statements
                    # and their durations, > 0 logs only
                    # statements running at least this number
                    # of milliseconds


# - What to Log -

#debug_print_parse = off
#debug_print_rewritten = off
#debug_print_plan = off
#debug_pretty_print = on
#log_checkpoints = off
#log_connections = off
#log_disconnections = off
#log_duration = off
#log_error_verbosity = default      # terse, default, or verbose messages
#log_hostname = off
log_line_prefix = '%t '         # special values:
                    #   %a = application name
                    #   %u = user name
                    #   %d = database name
                    #   %r = remote host and port
                    #   %h = remote host
                    #   %p = process ID
                    #   %t = timestamp without milliseconds
                    #   %m = timestamp with milliseconds
                    #   %i = command tag
                    #   %e = SQL state
                    #   %c = session ID
                    #   %l = session line number
                    #   %s = session start timestamp
                    #   %v = virtual transaction ID
                    #   %x = transaction ID (0 if none)
                    #   %q = stop here in non-session
                    #        processes
                    #   %% = '%'
                    # e.g. '<%u%%%d> '
#log_lock_waits = off           # log lock waits >= deadlock_timeout
#log_statement = 'none'         # none, ddl, mod, all
#log_temp_files = -1            # log temporary files equal or larger
                    # than the specified size in kilobytes;
                    # -1 disables, 0 logs all temp files
log_timezone = 'Asia/Seoul'


#------------------------------------------------------------------------------
# RUNTIME STATISTICS
#------------------------------------------------------------------------------

# - Query/Index Statistics Collector -

#track_activities = on
#track_counts = on
#track_io_timing = off
#track_functions = none         # none, pl, all
#track_activity_query_size = 1024   # (change requires restart)
#update_process_title = on
#stats_temp_directory = 'pg_stat_tmp'


# - Statistics Monitoring -

#log_parser_stats = off
#log_planner_stats = off
#log_executor_stats = off
#log_statement_stats = off


#------------------------------------------------------------------------------
# AUTOVACUUM PARAMETERS
#------------------------------------------------------------------------------

#autovacuum = on            # Enable autovacuum subprocess?  'on'
                    # requires track_counts to also be on.
#log_autovacuum_min_duration = -1   # -1 disables, 0 logs all actions and
                    # their durations, > 0 logs only
                    # actions running at least this number
                    # of milliseconds.
#autovacuum_max_workers = 3     # max number of autovacuum subprocesses
                    # (change requires restart)
#autovacuum_naptime = 1min      # time between autovacuum runs
#autovacuum_vacuum_threshold = 50   # min number of row updates before
                    # vacuum
#autovacuum_analyze_threshold = 50  # min number of row updates before
                    # analyze
#autovacuum_vacuum_scale_factor = 0.2   # fraction of table size before vacuum
#autovacuum_analyze_scale_factor = 0.1  # fraction of table size before analyze
#autovacuum_freeze_max_age = 200000000  # maximum XID age before forced vacuum
                    # (change requires restart)
#autovacuum_vacuum_cost_delay = 20ms    # default vacuum cost delay for
                    # autovacuum, in milliseconds;
                    # -1 means use vacuum_cost_delay
#autovacuum_vacuum_cost_limit = -1  # default vacuum cost limit for
                    # autovacuum, -1 means use
                    # vacuum_cost_limit


#------------------------------------------------------------------------------
# CLIENT CONNECTION DEFAULTS
#------------------------------------------------------------------------------

# - Statement Behavior -

#search_path = '"$user",public'     # schema names
#default_tablespace = ''        # a tablespace name, '' uses the default
#temp_tablespaces = ''          # a list of tablespace names, '' uses
                    # only default tablespace
#check_function_bodies = on
#default_transaction_isolation = 'read committed'
#default_transaction_read_only = off
#default_transaction_deferrable = off
#session_replication_role = 'origin'
#statement_timeout = 0          # in milliseconds, 0 is disabled
#lock_timeout = 0           # in milliseconds, 0 is disabled
#vacuum_freeze_min_age = 50000000
#vacuum_freeze_table_age = 150000000
#bytea_output = 'hex'           # hex, escape
#xmlbinary = 'base64'
#xmloption = 'content'

# - Locale and Formatting -

datestyle = 'iso, ymd'
#intervalstyle = 'postgres'
timezone = 'Asia/Seoul'
#timezone_abbreviations = 'Default'     # Select the set of available time zone
                    # abbreviations.  Currently, there are
                    #   Default
                    #   Australia
                    #   India
                    # You can create your own file in
                    # share/timezonesets/.
#extra_float_digits = 0         # min -15, max 3
#client_encoding = sql_ascii        # actually, defaults to database
                    # encoding

# These settings are initialized by initdb, but they can be changed.
lc_messages = 'Korean_Korea.949'            # locale for system error message
                    # strings
lc_monetary = 'Korean_Korea.949'            # locale for monetary formatting
lc_numeric = 'Korean_Korea.949'         # locale for number formatting
lc_time = 'Korean_Korea.949'                # locale for time formatting

# default configuration for text search
default_text_search_config = 'pg_catalog.simple'

# - Other Defaults -

#dynamic_library_path = '$libdir'
#local_preload_libraries = ''


#------------------------------------------------------------------------------
# LOCK MANAGEMENT
#------------------------------------------------------------------------------

#deadlock_timeout = 1s
#max_locks_per_transaction = 64     # min 10
                    # (change requires restart)
# Note:  Each lock table slot uses ~270 bytes of shared memory, and there are
# max_locks_per_transaction * (max_connections + max_prepared_transactions)
# lock table slots.
#max_pred_locks_per_transaction = 64    # min 10
                    # (change requires restart)


#------------------------------------------------------------------------------
# VERSION/PLATFORM COMPATIBILITY
#------------------------------------------------------------------------------

# - Previous PostgreSQL Versions -

#array_nulls = on
#backslash_quote = safe_encoding    # on, off, or safe_encoding
#default_with_oids = off
#escape_string_warning = on
#lo_compat_privileges = off
#quote_all_identifiers = off
#sql_inheritance = on
#standard_conforming_strings = on
#synchronize_seqscans = on

# - Other Platforms and Clients -

#transform_null_equals = off


#------------------------------------------------------------------------------
# ERROR HANDLING
#------------------------------------------------------------------------------

#exit_on_error = off            # terminate session on any error?
#restart_after_crash = on       # reinitialize after backend crash?


#------------------------------------------------------------------------------
# CONFIG FILE INCLUDES
#------------------------------------------------------------------------------

# These options allow settings to be loaded from files other than the
# default postgresql.conf.

#include_dir = 'conf.d'         # include files ending in '.conf' from
                    # directory 'conf.d'
#include_if_exists = 'exists.conf'  # include file only if it exists
#include = 'special.conf'       # include file


#------------------------------------------------------------------------------
# CUSTOMIZED OPTIONS
#------------------------------------------------------------------------------

# Add settings for extensions here

pg_test_fsync result:

C:\temp>"C:\Program Files\PostgreSQL\9.3\bin\pg_test_fsync"
5 seconds per test
O_DIRECT supported on this platform for open_datasync and open_sync.

Compare file sync methods using one 8kB write:
(in wal_sync_method preference order, except fdatasync
is Linux's default)
        open_datasync                   81199.920 ops/sec      12 usecs/op
        fdatasync                                     n/a
        fsync                              45.337 ops/sec   22057 usecs/op
        fsync_writethrough                 46.470 ops/sec   21519 usecs/op
        open_sync                                     n/a

Compare file sync methods using two 8kB writes:
(in wal_sync_method preference order, except fdatasync
is Linux's default)
        open_datasync                   41093.981 ops/sec      24 usecs/op
        fdatasync                                     n/a
        fsync                              38.569 ops/sec   25927 usecs/op
        fsync_writethrough                 36.970 ops/sec   27049 usecs/op
        open_sync                                     n/a

Compare open_sync with different write sizes:
(This is designed to compare the cost of writing 16kB
in different write open_sync sizes.)
         1 * 16kB open_sync write                     n/a
         2 *  8kB open_sync writes                    n/a
         4 *  4kB open_sync writes                    n/a
         8 *  2kB open_sync writes                    n/a
        16 *  1kB open_sync writes                    n/a

Test if fsync on non-write file descriptor is honored:
(If the times are similar, fsync() can sync data written
on a different descriptor.)
        write, fsync, close                45.564 ops/sec   21947 usecs/op
        write, close, fsync                33.373 ops/sec   29964 usecs/op

Non-Sync'ed 8kB writes:
        write                             889.800 ops/sec    1124 usecs/op

Doesn't this fsync result mean that maximum write tps cannot exceed 45 tps?

Another question: Shouldn't 7200 rpm disk be able to perform about 120 tps? Why is fsync so slow?

share|improve this question

1 Answer 1

up vote 1 down vote accepted

To answer your first question.

No, the fsync parameter in postgresql.conf only tells the database that it should write to disk, not how it should do it. According to the documentation:

If this parameter is on, the PostgreSQL server will try to make sure that updates are physically written to disk, by issuing fsync() system calls or various equivalent methods

Which in this case, since you have not changed the wal_sync_method it should choose open_datasync since that is available and the default for Windows platforms.

Also, here I can only speculate:

But seeing that the table is small, and the updates as well, I would guess that you are actually hitting the write-back cache in the hard-drive, which means that you are not writing directly to the disk and therefore the operations are not slowed down due to the writing.

You do not mention what kind of hard drive it is, so it is not possible to know if the cache is write-back, but it sounds like a possible scenario.

share|improve this answer
    
When I saw the line #wal_sync_method = fsync, I thought fsync is the default in Windows. I should have read the comment at the side carefully. Obviously my drive was caching the writes with open_datasync. After changing it to fsync, tps dropped to 50~60, which is reasonable now. –  alice Oct 14 '13 at 8:55

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