I have some Postgresql 10 instances running on Windows Server that are in continuous recovery mode. Once in a while they just stop recovering without giving any errors, like in this example log file (in CSV format, i've removed some of the fields for clarity):

2022-08-23 19:42:02.391,"restored log file ""000000010000029F0000001A"" from archive"
2022-08-23 19:42:07.638,"restored log file ""000000010000029F0000001B"" from archive"
2022-08-23 19:42:13.276,"restored log file ""000000010000029F0000001C"" from archive"
2022-08-23 19:42:18.464,"restored log file ""000000010000029F0000001D"" from archive"
2022-08-23 19:42:18.699,"redo done at 29F/1CFFF7F8"
2022-08-23 19:42:18.708,"last completed transaction was at log time 2022-07-20 12:49:38.247406-03"
2022-08-23 19:42:24.304,"restored log file ""000000010000029F0000001C"" from archive"
2022-08-23 19:42:48.625,"selected new timeline ID: 2"
2022-08-23 19:43:13.718,"archive recovery complete"
2022-08-23 19:43:27.746,"database system is ready to accept connections"

This happens even thou the next wal file to be restored in the sequence (000000010000029F0000001D, 000000010000029F0000001E) is present in the archive directory. The restore command I'm using is something like this:

restore_command = '"C:/program files/postgresql/10/bin/pg_standby.exe" -s 2 D:/archive/127 %f %p %r 2>>D:/archive/127/pg_standby.log'

My question is, are there any way I can find out what caused the instance stop recovering?

  • 1
    What is your setup? That looks like you didn't set standby_mode = on. Aug 24, 2022 at 13:04
  • Did you look in your pg_standby.log? BTW, pg_standby is very obsolete, built-in standby mode has been around for a long time.
    – jjanes
    Aug 24, 2022 at 13:20
  • Hi @LaurenzAlbe. My setup is Windows Server 2019 Standard and PostgreSQL 10.18. Looks like adding standby_mode='on' to recovery.conf solved the problem. I think that what was causing the instance to stop recovering is this error: "could not rename file ""pg_wal/00000001000002AA00000042"" to ""pg_wal/00000001000002AA00000085"" These type of errors are now appearing once in while in between "restored log file" entries.
    – Norba
    Aug 25, 2022 at 13:44
  • Hi @jjanes. We use the built in replication for in site disaster recovery. But for offsite disaster recovery we use log shipping.
    – Norba
    Aug 25, 2022 at 13:46
  • That error is a different question. There has been a bug like that a while ago - you could ask a ne question with the complete error message in it. Aug 25, 2022 at 13:52

1 Answer 1


If recovery stops and the server promotes without you explicitly telling it to do so, you are probably in archive recovery mode rather than in standby mode.

Since PostgreSQL v12, you activate standby mode by creating a file standby.signal rather than recovery.signal in the PostgreSQL data directory.

Before PostgreSQL v12, you have to set standby_mode = on in recovery.conf to achieve the same thing.

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