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       pgbench - run a benchmark test on PostgreSQL


       pgbench -i [option...] [dbname]

       pgbench [option...] [dbname]


       pgbench is a simple program for running benchmark tests on PostgreSQL. It runs the same
       sequence of SQL commands over and over, possibly in multiple concurrent database sessions,
       and then calculates the average transaction rate (transactions per second). By default,
       pgbench tests a scenario that is loosely based on TPC-B, involving five SELECT, UPDATE,
       and INSERT commands per transaction. However, it is easy to test other cases by writing
       your own transaction script files.

       Typical output from pgbench looks like:

           transaction type: TPC-B (sort of)
           scaling factor: 10
           query mode: simple
           number of clients: 10
           number of threads: 1
           number of transactions per client: 1000
           number of transactions actually processed: 10000/10000
           tps = 85.184871 (including connections establishing)
           tps = 85.296346 (excluding connections establishing)

       The first six lines report some of the most important parameter settings. The next line
       reports the number of transactions completed and intended (the latter being just the
       product of number of clients and number of transactions per client); these will be equal
       unless the run failed before completion. (In -T mode, only the actual number of
       transactions is printed.) The last two lines report the number of transactions per second,
       figured with and without counting the time to start database sessions.

       The default TPC-B-like transaction test requires specific tables to be set up beforehand.
       pgbench should be invoked with the -i (initialize) option to create and populate these
       tables. (When you are testing a custom script, you don't need this step, but will instead
       need to do whatever setup your test needs.) Initialization looks like:

           pgbench -i [ other-options ] dbname

       where dbname is the name of the already-created database to test in. (You may also need
       -h, -p, and/or -U options to specify how to connect to the database server.)

           pgbench -i creates four tables pgbench_accounts, pgbench_branches, pgbench_history,
           and pgbench_tellers, destroying any existing tables of these names. Be very careful to
           use another database if you have tables having these names!

       At the default “scale factor” of 1, the tables initially contain this many rows:

           table                   # of rows
           pgbench_branches        1
           pgbench_tellers         10
           pgbench_accounts        100000
           pgbench_history         0

       You can (and, for most purposes, probably should) increase the number of rows by using the
       -s (scale factor) option. The -F (fillfactor) option might also be used at this point.

       Once you have done the necessary setup, you can run your benchmark with a command that
       doesn't include -i, that is

           pgbench [ options ] dbname

       In nearly all cases, you'll need some options to make a useful test. The most important
       options are -c (number of clients), -t (number of transactions), -T (time limit), and -f
       (specify a custom script file). See below for a full list.


       The following is divided into three subsections: Different options are used during
       database initialization and while running benchmarks, some options are useful in both

   Initialization Options
       pgbench accepts the following command-line initialization arguments:

           Required to invoke initialization mode.

       -F fillfactor
           Create the pgbench_accounts, pgbench_tellers and pgbench_branches tables with the
           given fillfactor. Default is 100.

           Perform no vacuuming after initialization.

           Switch logging to quiet mode, producing only one progress message per 5 seconds. The
           default logging prints one message each 100000 rows, which often outputs many lines
           per second (especially on good hardware).

       -s scale_factor
           Multiply the number of rows generated by the scale factor. For example, -s 100 will
           create 10,000,000 rows in the pgbench_accounts table. Default is 1. When the scale is
           20,000 or larger, the columns used to hold account identifiers (aid columns) will
           switch to using larger integers (bigint), in order to be big enough to hold the range
           of account identifiers.

           Create foreign key constraints between the standard tables.

           Create indexes in the specified tablespace, rather than the default tablespace.

           Create tables in the specified tablespace, rather than the default tablespace.

           Create all tables as unlogged tables, rather than permanent tables.

   Benchmarking Options
       pgbench accepts the following command-line benchmarking arguments:

       -c clients
           Number of clients simulated, that is, number of concurrent database sessions. Default
           is 1.

           Establish a new connection for each transaction, rather than doing it just once per
           client session. This is useful to measure the connection overhead.

           Print debugging output.

       -D varname=value
           Define a variable for use by a custom script (see below). Multiple -D options are

       -f filename
           Read transaction script from filename. See below for details.  -N, -S, and -f are
           mutually exclusive.

       -j threads
           Number of worker threads within pgbench. Using more than one thread can be helpful on
           multi-CPU machines. The number of clients must be a multiple of the number of threads,
           since each thread is given the same number of client sessions to manage. Default is 1.

           Write the time taken by each transaction to a log file. See below for details.

       -M querymode
           Protocol to use for submitting queries to the server:

           ·   simple: use simple query protocol.

           ·   extended: use extended query protocol.

           ·   prepared: use extended query protocol with prepared statements.

           The default is simple query protocol. (See Chapter 48, Frontend/Backend Protocol, in
           the documentation for more information.)

           Perform no vacuuming before running the test. This option is necessary if you are
           running a custom test scenario that does not include the standard tables
           pgbench_accounts, pgbench_branches, pgbench_history, and pgbench_tellers.

           Do not update pgbench_tellers and pgbench_branches. This will avoid update contention
           on these tables, but it makes the test case even less like TPC-B.

           Report the average per-statement latency (execution time from the perspective of the
           client) of each command after the benchmark finishes. See below for details.

       -s scale_factor
           Report the specified scale factor in pgbench's output. With the built-in tests, this
           is not necessary; the correct scale factor will be detected by counting the number of
           rows in the pgbench_branches table. However, when testing custom benchmarks (-f
           option), the scale factor will be reported as 1 unless this option is used.

           Perform select-only transactions instead of TPC-B-like test.

       -t transactions
           Number of transactions each client runs. Default is 10.

       -T seconds
           Run the test for this many seconds, rather than a fixed number of transactions per
           client.  -t and -T are mutually exclusive.

           Vacuum all four standard tables before running the test. With neither -n nor -v,
           pgbench will vacuum the pgbench_tellers and pgbench_branches tables, and will truncate

           Length of aggregation interval (in seconds). May be used only together with -l - with
           this option, the log contains per-interval summary (number of transactions, min/max
           latency and two additional fields useful for variance estimation).

           This option is not currently supported on Windows.

           Sampling rate, used when writing data into the log, to reduce the amount of log
           generated. If this option is given, only the specified fraction of transactions are
           logged. 1.0 means all transactions will be logged, 0.05 means only 5% of the
           transactions will be logged.

           Remember to take the sampling rate into account when processing the log file. For
           example, when computing tps values, you need to multiply the numbers accordingly (e.g.
           with 0.01 sample rate, you'll only get 1/100 of the actual tps).

   Common Options
       pgbench accepts the following command-line common arguments:

       -h hostname
           The database server's host name

       -p port
           The database server's port number

       -U login
           The user name to connect as

       -V, --version
           Print the pgbench version and exit.

       -?, --help
           Show help about pgbench command line arguments, and exit.


   What is the “Transaction” Actually Performed in pgbench?
       The default transaction script issues seven commands per transaction:

        1. BEGIN;

        2. UPDATE pgbench_accounts SET abalance = abalance + :delta WHERE aid = :aid;

        3. SELECT abalance FROM pgbench_accounts WHERE aid = :aid;

        4. UPDATE pgbench_tellers SET tbalance = tbalance + :delta WHERE tid = :tid;

        5. UPDATE pgbench_branches SET bbalance = bbalance + :delta WHERE bid = :bid;

        6. INSERT INTO pgbench_history (tid, bid, aid, delta, mtime) VALUES (:tid, :bid, :aid,
           :delta, CURRENT_TIMESTAMP);

        7. END;

       If you specify -N, steps 4 and 5 aren't included in the transaction. If you specify -S,
       only the SELECT is issued.

   Custom Scripts
       pgbench has support for running custom benchmark scenarios by replacing the default
       transaction script (described above) with a transaction script read from a file (-f
       option). In this case a “transaction” counts as one execution of a script file. You can
       even specify multiple scripts (multiple -f options), in which case a random one of the
       scripts is chosen each time a client session starts a new transaction.

       The format of a script file is one SQL command per line; multiline SQL commands are not
       supported. Empty lines and lines beginning with -- are ignored. Script file lines can also
       be “meta commands”, which are interpreted by pgbench itself, as described below.

       There is a simple variable-substitution facility for script files. Variables can be set by
       the command-line -D option, explained above, or by the meta commands explained below. In
       addition to any variables preset by -D command-line options, the variable scale is preset
       to the current scale factor. Once set, a variable's value can be inserted into a SQL
       command by writing :variablename. When running more than one client session, each session
       has its own set of variables.

       Script file meta commands begin with a backslash (\). Arguments to a meta command are
       separated by white space. These meta commands are supported:

       \set varname operand1 [ operator operand2 ]
           Sets variable varname to a calculated integer value. Each operand is either an integer
           constant or a :variablename reference to a variable having an integer value. The
           operator can be +, -, *, or /.


               \set ntellers 10 * :scale

       \setrandom varname min max
           Sets variable varname to a random integer value between the limits min and max
           inclusive. Each limit can be either an integer constant or a :variablename reference
           to a variable having an integer value.


               \setrandom aid 1 :naccounts

       \sleep number [ us | ms | s ]
           Causes script execution to sleep for the specified duration in microseconds (us),
           milliseconds (ms) or seconds (s). If the unit is omitted then seconds are the default.
           number can be either an integer constant or a :variablename reference to a variable
           having an integer value.


               \sleep 10 ms

       \setshell varname command [ argument ... ]
           Sets variable varname to the result of the shell command command. The command must
           return an integer value through its standard output.

           argument can be either a text constant or a :variablename reference to a variable of
           any types. If you want to use argument starting with colons, you need to add an
           additional colon at the beginning of argument.


               \setshell variable_to_be_assigned command literal_argument :variable ::literal_starting_with_colon

       \shell command [ argument ... ]
           Same as \setshell, but the result is ignored.


               \shell command literal_argument :variable ::literal_starting_with_colon

       As an example, the full definition of the built-in TPC-B-like transaction is:

           \set nbranches :scale
           \set ntellers 10 * :scale
           \set naccounts 100000 * :scale
           \setrandom aid 1 :naccounts
           \setrandom bid 1 :nbranches
           \setrandom tid 1 :ntellers
           \setrandom delta -5000 5000
           UPDATE pgbench_accounts SET abalance = abalance + :delta WHERE aid = :aid;
           SELECT abalance FROM pgbench_accounts WHERE aid = :aid;
           UPDATE pgbench_tellers SET tbalance = tbalance + :delta WHERE tid = :tid;
           UPDATE pgbench_branches SET bbalance = bbalance + :delta WHERE bid = :bid;
           INSERT INTO pgbench_history (tid, bid, aid, delta, mtime) VALUES (:tid, :bid, :aid, :delta, CURRENT_TIMESTAMP);

       This script allows each iteration of the transaction to reference different,
       randomly-chosen rows. (This example also shows why it's important for each client session
       to have its own variablesotherwise they'd not be independently touching different rows.)

   Per-Transaction Logging
       With the -l option but without the --aggregate-interval, pgbench writes the time taken by
       each transaction to a log file. The log file will be named pgbench_log.nnn, where nnn is
       the PID of the pgbench process. If the -j option is 2 or higher, creating multiple worker
       threads, each will have its own log file. The first worker will use the same name for its
       log file as in the standard single worker case. The additional log files for the other
       workers will be named pgbench_log.nnn.mmm, where mmm is a sequential number for each
       worker starting with 1.

       The format of the log is:

           client_id transaction_no time file_no time_epoch time_us

       where time is the total elapsed transaction time in microseconds, file_no identifies which
       script file was used (useful when multiple scripts were specified with -f), and
       time_epoch/time_us are a UNIX epoch format timestamp and an offset in microseconds
       (suitable for creating a ISO 8601 timestamp with fractional seconds) showing when the
       transaction completed.

       Here are example outputs:

            0 199 2241 0 1175850568 995598
            0 200 2465 0 1175850568 998079
            0 201 2513 0 1175850569 608
            0 202 2038 0 1175850569 2663

       When running a long test on hardware that can handle a lot of transactions, the log files
       can become very large. The --sampling-rate option can be used to log only a random sample
       of transactions.

   Aggregated Logging
       With the --aggregate-interval option, the logs use a bit different format:

           interval_start num_of_transactions latency_sum latency_2_sum min_latency max_latency

       where interval_start is the start of the interval (UNIX epoch format timestamp),
       num_of_transactions is the number of transactions within the interval, latency_sum is a
       sum of latencies (so you can compute average latency easily). The following two fields are
       useful for variance estimation - latency_sum is a sum of latencies and latency_2_sum is a
       sum of 2nd powers of latencies. The last two fields are min_latency - a minimum latency
       within the interval, and max_latency - maximum latency within the interval. A transaction
       is counted into the interval when it was committed.

       Here is example outputs:

           1345828501 5601 1542744 483552416 61 2573
           1345828503 7884 1979812 565806736 60 1479
           1345828505 7208 1979422 567277552 59 1391
           1345828507 7685 1980268 569784714 60 1398
           1345828509 7073 1979779 573489941 236 1411

       Notice that while the plain (unaggregated) log file contains index of the custom script
       files, the aggregated log does not. Therefore if you need per script data, you need to
       aggregate the data on your own.

   Per-Statement Latencies
       With the -r option, pgbench collects the elapsed transaction time of each statement
       executed by every client. It then reports an average of those values, referred to as the
       latency for each statement, after the benchmark has finished.

       For the default script, the output will look similar to this:

           starting vacuum...end.
           transaction type: TPC-B (sort of)
           scaling factor: 1
           query mode: simple
           number of clients: 10
           number of threads: 1
           number of transactions per client: 1000
           number of transactions actually processed: 10000/10000
           tps = 618.764555 (including connections establishing)
           tps = 622.977698 (excluding connections establishing)
           statement latencies in milliseconds:
                   0.004386        \set nbranches 1 * :scale
                   0.001343        \set ntellers 10 * :scale
                   0.001212        \set naccounts 100000 * :scale
                   0.001310        \setrandom aid 1 :naccounts
                   0.001073        \setrandom bid 1 :nbranches
                   0.001005        \setrandom tid 1 :ntellers
                   0.001078        \setrandom delta -5000 5000
                   0.326152        BEGIN;
                   0.603376        UPDATE pgbench_accounts SET abalance = abalance + :delta WHERE aid = :aid;
                   0.454643        SELECT abalance FROM pgbench_accounts WHERE aid = :aid;
                   5.528491        UPDATE pgbench_tellers SET tbalance = tbalance + :delta WHERE tid = :tid;
                   7.335435        UPDATE pgbench_branches SET bbalance = bbalance + :delta WHERE bid = :bid;
                   0.371851        INSERT INTO pgbench_history (tid, bid, aid, delta, mtime) VALUES (:tid, :bid, :aid, :delta, CURRENT_TIMESTAMP);
                   1.212976        END;

       If multiple script files are specified, the averages are reported separately for each
       script file.

       Note that collecting the additional timing information needed for per-statement latency
       computation adds some overhead. This will slow average execution speed and lower the
       computed TPS. The amount of slowdown varies significantly depending on platform and
       hardware. Comparing average TPS values with and without latency reporting enabled is a
       good way to measure if the timing overhead is significant.

   Good Practices
       It is very easy to use pgbench to produce completely meaningless numbers. Here are some
       guidelines to help you get useful results.

       In the first place, never believe any test that runs for only a few seconds. Use the -t or
       -T option to make the run last at least a few minutes, so as to average out noise. In some
       cases you could need hours to get numbers that are reproducible. It's a good idea to try
       the test run a few times, to find out if your numbers are reproducible or not.

       For the default TPC-B-like test scenario, the initialization scale factor (-s) should be
       at least as large as the largest number of clients you intend to test (-c); else you'll
       mostly be measuring update contention. There are only -s rows in the pgbench_branches
       table, and every transaction wants to update one of them, so -c values in excess of -s
       will undoubtedly result in lots of transactions blocked waiting for other transactions.

       The default test scenario is also quite sensitive to how long it's been since the tables
       were initialized: accumulation of dead rows and dead space in the tables changes the
       results. To understand the results you must keep track of the total number of updates and
       when vacuuming happens. If autovacuum is enabled it can result in unpredictable changes in
       measured performance.

       A limitation of pgbench is that it can itself become the bottleneck when trying to test a
       large number of client sessions. This can be alleviated by running pgbench on a different
       machine from the database server, although low network latency will be essential. It might
       even be useful to run several pgbench instances concurrently, on several client machines,
       against the same database server.