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I have a PostgreSQL production server running on CentOS (compiled from source), and I'm planning to setup a hot standby database on another server, running on Ubuntu (default Ubuntu binaries).

The production server is running on 8.3.5, and the planned Ubuntu hot standby is running on 8.3.x. Can I use the production WAL files on the Ubuntu 8.3.x server without problems?

Thanks in advance.

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We (my teammates did the work, not me) ended up using compiled PostgreSQL on the Ubuntu hot standby. The source PostgreSQL was CentOS 5.0 64-bit, the hot standby was Ubuntu 8.04 on EC2. The WAL files worked perfectly. – radamanthus Nov 2 '09 at 18:22
up vote 1 down vote accepted

PostgreSQL should be compatible between minor releases, but not with major releases. I.E. 8.3.0 and 8.3.1 should be compatible with each other, but 8.3.0 and 8.4.0 will not be. Minor releases are just bug fixes, so you shouldn't have any problems. As depesz says, you need to make sure the architecture is the same.

If you don't have compatible versions, you can use something like slony to replicate across different versions.

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When you say same architecture, you are only referring to the PostgreSQL version right? If I have 9.1 installed on both Windows & Ubuntu, would the data still be compatible? – Antony Nov 27 '11 at 16:10
Not necessarily - the main issue is with collations. Locale names may not match (particularly between Windows and Linux), and if equivalent locales are not totally identical, you could have problems with an index that doesn't match the sort order of the locale of the system you're replaying the WAL into. There could also be issues with data structure alignment between OSs. – hbn Sep 15 '14 at 15:08
Even differing glibc versions between a master and standby can cause index problems: see… – hbn Sep 16 '14 at 19:44

I suggest that you go through the upgrade procedure, that is recommended by postgresql, i.e. dump all the databases and then restore them ( with pg_dumpall ).

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It depends on architecture and compilation options.

Check if both servers/system have the same architecture (cpu, 32/64 bit)

Then check if both have similiar compile options - paths are irrelevant, the most important option is "integer-datetimes".

If everything matches - you should be able to use wal files across systems.

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Thanks. I'll try it out and post the result here. – radamanthus Oct 20 '09 at 7:14

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