If you require a very stable database management system that is supported by more than 20 years of community development, PostgreSQL is the right choice.
Therefore, modern open-source development platforms, like amplication.com, provide native support for PostgreSQL allowing developers, both Front-End and Full-Stack, to fully utilize PostgreSQL and its benefits.
Here are our top 10 tips for maximizing PostgreSQL efficiency.
Steer Clear of Public Schemas
When you establish a new database in PostgreSQL with the default parameters, a public schema is produced automatically. It also gives a role called public access to this schema. It is commonly established best practice to construct custom schemas and control access to these schemas using the concept of least privilege. Ideally, each entity should have its specific schema.
Utilize Connection Pooling
Connecting directly to your PostgreSQL databases should be avoided to conserve database platform resources and decrease bottlenecks. It is advised that developers and apps connect to the connection pooler instead. This reduces the number of resources used concurrently, enhancing the overall efficiency of the databases.
Uphold Consistent Data Conventions
Consistent storage conventions should be used to maintain the integrity of the data in your database. This is especially true when records must be masked before being committed to the database. If you do not follow this simple guideline, your data may become increasingly inconsistent over time, to the point where the collection of data becomes illegible and useless. Even if databases aren’t very complex yet, data normalization should be a top concern.
Apply Schema Versioning
When using PostgreSQL, schema versioning is useful, and in some scenarios, necessary. The Pyrseas utility, for example, creates YAML files from all the database objects. Allowing development teams to catalog and track database versions.
Trigger Data Audits and Monitoring
It is highly recommended that an audit mechanism will be devised to track changes made to your PostgreSQL database. This could be done with a simple mechanism driven by triggers on actions such as Insert, Delete, and any modification too. These audit entries can then be written to an audit table.
Practice Good Account Hygiene
To manage the risks involved related to database accounts being compromised, PostgreSQL account passwords need to be changed on a regular rotation basis. Strong passwords should always be used for these accounts. These rotation schedules should not be negotiable.
Leverage Environment Variables
Despite what might be stated about defensive programming and database architecture, code is always vulnerable to some degree. Because of this, passing your database authentication details inside of the database is never a good idea. When exposing connection details, it is always preferable to expose your database credentials via environment variables.
Segregate Data between Environments
Database changes should never be made directly to a production environment before it is not deployed to a development or test environment first, to ascertain the impact of the change. It does not matter how small or insignificant the change may seem. Clear segregation between environments is not only practically relevant but also has an impact on regulatory compliance.
Always Perform Thorough Testing
Although it might seem like an additional, fruitless, task in the process of database design, formulating and creating test cases are essential to creating database objects. It is common for developers, through oversight, to forget necessary elements when databases are created. Creating test classes in PostgreSQL for testing is the recommended best practice.
Data Backup and Disaster Recovery
Periodic database backups that are scheduled to run automatically, are the industry norm. All environments should be included in these schedules to remain in perfect synchronization. As far as disaster recovery in PostgreSQL is concerned, the Barman utility allows database engineers and developers to restore any of the databases to a previous point in time.
Because PostgreSQL is an open-source database management system it is compatible with online and offline development platforms. Its powerful scripting abilities allow for complex data manipulation for incoming data and data at rest, scripting across various programming languages. Although PostgreSQL databases are a powerful addition to your development stack, it does not mean you will never run into problems. Pairing it with a flexible online development platform, though, makes solid sense.