Interview with David Christensen
- How to Tame a Mastodon: Lessons for PostgreSQL at Scale
- Thursday, 11:15
- Could you briefly introduce yourself?
Hi, I’m David Christensen, a Principal Database Engineer at Crunchy Data. I have worked with PostgreSQL for almost 20 years, going back to version 6.5 (“who needs Foreign Keys”) and helping clients deploy Postgres in their own environments.
I work on the engineering team at Crunchy Data supporting High Availability Postgres deployments using Ansible as well as maintaining our own high-security/hardened version of Postgres. My most recent contribution is building out a test suite to allow testing of these products in many different deployment scenarios or configurations. This supports 7 different OS, 5 supported Postgres versions, 4 architecture deployments and countless feature flags.
I also work on Postgres patches and am working with Stephen Frost on TDE.
- How do you engage with the PostgreSQL Community?
I spent a lot of time answering questions on the Postgres IRC channel back in the day. I keep an eye on pgsql-hackers for threads of interest, and have spoken on-and-off for a dozen years at conferences in the US. I am currently working on a patch series to support adding TDE with authenticated encryption to the core database product which will improve upon existing community approaches using non-authenticated encryption.
- Have you enjoyed previous PostgreSQL Europe conferences, either as an attendee or as a speaker?
This will be my first year of speaking or attending a Postgres conference in Europe, so I am looking forward to interacting with the community on the other side of the pond. I’ll also be at pgDay Chicago soon talking about TDE.
- What will your talk be about, exactly? Why this topic?
My talk covers problems that you will encounter when running a large database and solutions for those problems. This was based on a client with a larger database that I was helping with and thought I would formalize a lot of the lessons that we learned the hard way.
- What is the audience for your talk?
Postgres DBAs or developers who are interested in how approaches change when you’re running against larger databases.
- What existing knowledge should the attendee have?
Basic administration experience with using Postgres: familiarity with DDL, replicas, etc.