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Multi-site setup


Each facility has a database server. For each site the facility library is the main library. The libraries from other facilities are replications. These replications are read-only. This means that every site is independent but still benefits from the work and libraries another facility is doing.

In Postgres terms:
Use a Streaming Replication for Multi-Site setups.


In each facility you have a database server up and running with Postgres installed.

In this example Linux is used to setup the database servers. It should however work with any other operating system as well.

Create primary database server

Configure primary server

  1. change postgres.conf to enable networking

  2. create a replication user

  3. allow remote access in pg_hba.conf

This is the database server in our main facility - e.g. Munich

initdb -D /var/lib/postgresql/daselement-munich

change postgres.conf to enable networking

vim /var/lib/postgresql/daselement-munich/postgres.conf

# uncomment and change the line:
listen_addresses = '*'

# and change the port to 5433 to avoid conflicts with any default instances that are running on port 5432
port = 5433

# start the Postgres server
pg_ctl -D /var/lib/postgresql/daselement-munich start

Create a user accounts

# postgres is the default postgres database
psql --port 5433 postgres

# create user that is allowed to create new databases and read/write information
CREATE ROLE dbuser LOGIN password 'password';

# create replication user
[local]:5433 postgres=# create user repuser replication;

Create a replication user

Allow remote access in pg_hba.conf

add line to allow access for the replication user

vim /var/lib/postgresql/daselement-munich/pg_hba.conf

# TYPE  DATABASE        USER            CIDR-ADDRESS            METHOD
# IPv4 local connections
host    all             repuser             localhost               trust

# restart the Postgres server because of changes in the config files
pg_ctl -D /var/lib/postgresql/daselement-munich restart

The primary system is now ready. Let’s move on to the replica system!

Create replica database server

Configure replication server

Now we are at a clean database server in another facility - e.g. Vancouver

# create the replica Postgres server
# this command pg_basebackup copies the files from the primary database

pg_basebackup -h db-munich -U repuser --checkpoint=fast -D /var/lib/postgresql/daselement-munich-replica/ -R --slot=daselement_munich -C --port 5432

In the replica directory you will find these two files:


this file defines that the database that it is a replica

contains information to connect to the primary server

Now start the replica server:

# start the Postgres server
pg_ctl -D /var/lib/postgresql/daselement-munich-replica

Any changes made in the primary database get synced/streamed to the replication server(s). If the replication server is down it will add the changes once it’s back online!

Configure library

In the other facility copy and import the library (.lib) from main facility:

  1. update the library root

  2. update the database information

  3. lock the library (Lock Library option) to prevent editing and ingesting of new elements!

An option is to setup the main facility to automatically sync the Proxy Files to the other facilities when an element is ingested. This can be done with an additional transcoding task and a custom command task.

# Example:
your-sync-tool <> /path/to/other/facility
your-sync-tool <> /path/to/other/facility
your-sync-tool <> /path/to/other/facility

To reduce disk space and network traffic only sync the high-res source files when needed

Advanced Setup

If you want to take it a step further it’s a good idea to look into these topics:

  • high availability

  • load balancing

  • connection pooling

  • automatic fail-over

Here is a great video tutorial using PGPool-II to deal with these topics.


Monitoring should be done on the primary database server

To monitor the databases you can for example use pgwatch2


psql - commands




list all databases



list all users


lists available publications


lists available subscriptions

ALTER USER user_name WITH PASSWORD 'new_password';

change user password

Can not start Postgres Database

FATAL:  could not create lock file "/var/run/postgresql/.s.PGSQL.5434.lock": Permission denied

Solution is to fix the permissions on the folder. For example like this:

sudo chmod a+w+r /var/lib/postgresql

initdb: command not found

The initdb is located in the installation directory of Postgres.

Fix for Ubuntu:

# create a symbolic link to initdb to access the command
sudo ln -s /usr/lib/postgresql/14/bin/initdb /usr/local/bin

# now you can run ...

pg_ctl: command not found

The pg_ctl is located in the installation directory of Postgres.

Fix for Ubuntu:

# create a symbolic link to initdb to access the command
sudo ln -s /usr/lib/postgresql/14/bin/pg_ctl /usr/local/bin

# now you can run ...

Unable to connect to server; FATAL: role “postgres“ does not exist

Seems like there is no user in the database called “postgres”.
To create a user use this command:

# access the database
psql --port=5432 postgres

# create user in the database
CREATE ROLE postgres LOGIN password 'postgres';
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