The Moodle Database – using PostgreSQL part 1

Postgres is an awesome database. But should you use it for your Moodle site?

PostgreSQL is one of the five databases that is fully supported by Moodle.

(Whilst Oracle and Microsoft SQL are counted in these five, they are by far the worst choice you can make, and should only be used if absolutely no other option exists for you).

If considering PostgreSQL as your choice of database you definitely need to read this page:

https://docs.moodle.org/36/en/PostgreSQL

As well as the technical steps to install and use PostgreSQL with Moodle, there are very clear pointers to some of the issues you might encounter:

Client Authentication is how PostgreSQL decides which user accounts can connect to which databases from which hosts. PostgreSQL handles this in a very different way to MySQL, and this is a potential pitfall for system administrators who are used to MySQL and now find themselves setting up a PostgreSQL server.

There are also challenges if you are running Moodle and your database on different servers (which is quite likely in large installations).

What’s our advice?

Well, if you have PostgreSQL experts in your organisation, you already use PostgreSQL and love it, and you expect your Moodle site to be big and busy, and you need top performance, then PostgreSQL is a great choice!  You are unlikely to regret it.

However, if you are a newer server or database administrator and only know MySQL, or you are a complete beginner admin and setting up Moodle for the first time, you should definitely stick with the traditional MySQL database, or consider the newer MariaDB option.

Next post we will look at PostgreSQL a bit more, and following that we will start looking at MySQL and MariaDB.

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