PostgreSQL on the Rise: 2018 Postgres Findings & 2019 Trends

Sebastian Insausti


A strong community coupled with an increasingly stable and feature-rich platform are making PostgreSQL a strong contender for replacing the “big boys” of enterprise data. We here at Severalnines have also seen this trend and the growth of popularity of PostgreSQL. Below we will look at the future of PostgreSQL and why its growth is booming!

PostgreSQL Market Rise

According to DB-Engines PostgreSQL is the number four top database in use today and the number two most used open source database (behind MySQL). What’s interesting about this ranking however is the year-over-year score change that shows MySQL dropping in the triple digits while PostgreSQL is increasing by more than 75 points.

Database Rankings December 2018

Source: DB-Engines. Database Rankings December 2018

DB-Engines also declared PostgreSQL as the DBMS of the Year for 2017, the 2018 winner has not yet been announced.

The 2018 Stack Overflow survey found PostgreSQL ranked as number three as the top used database technologies behind MySQL and SQL Server. This is particularly interesting considering Stack Overflow is primarily a site for developers and in spite of this PostgreSQL is still preferred over MongoDB (which is a favorite amongst that audience).

Stack Overflow 2018 User Survey

Source: Stack Overflow 2018 User Survey

In an article titled Why Oracle’s missteps have led to PostgreSQL’s ‘moment in the database market” author Matt Asay said “Postgres is cool in part because of how great a database it is, and partly because it’s the clearest like-for-like alternative to Oracle, which no one seems to want to use if they have any choice in the matter. No wonder, then, that out of all databases in existence, Postgres outperformed them all in terms of rising popularity.”

This sentiment was echoed by Tony Baer in his article Has the time finally come for PostgreSQL? , who said “it has become the go-to open source platform for third parties seeking to deliver their own relational database products. That is directly attributable to the conservative nature of the open source project that has prioritized stability and working nuts and bolts over bleeding edge flash.”

PostgreSQL Booming at Severalnines

Similar to what the market is seeing from a growth standpoint Severalnines is also seeing a boom in PostgreSQL interest.

PostgreSQL deployments and activations on ClusterControl have grown by 152% in 2018 (Download ClusterControl for Free) and web traffic has grown by nearly 3000% (yes that’s three zeros!) for Postgres content.

So what’s driving this increase? I’d say it’s several things. For one, as mentioned by Tony Baer above, PostgreSQL development over the past few years has really focused on improving the stability and functionality of the database rather than just churning out new features for the sake of flash. This was also true with the release of PostgreSQL 11 whose main features focused on improving indexing, partitioning, and a new stored procedures feature.

Top PostgreSQL Blogs of 2018

In line with the increased global interest in PostgreSQL in recent years, we decided to drum up our own contribution to the PostgreSQL community and started to create more PostgreSQL content also for our readers and users with the help of a team of specialist writers. Here are our top PostgreSQL blogs from 2018 …

  1. My Favorite PostgreSQL Queries and Why They Matter: This blog took off when an active debate started on Hackernews resulting in nearly 40K readers! The blog discusses extracting insight, answering questions, and meaningful metrics from data by way of querying and data manipulation is an integral component of SQL in general. This blog presents a combination of 8 interesting, differing PostgreSQL queries or types of queries to explore, study, learn, or otherwise manipulate data sets. The blog was followed up in July.
  2. A Performance Cheat Sheet for PostgreSQL: Performance tuning is not trivial, but you can go a long way with a few basic guidelines. In this blog, discussed how you analyze the workload of the database, and then review a list of important configuration parameters to improve the performance of PostgreSQL.
  3. PostgreSQL Privileges & User Management – What You Should Know: This blog demonstrates the basic PostgreSQL users and permissions.
  4. Deploying PostgreSQL on a Docker Container: This blog provides a high level overview and tips and tricks for deploying your PostgreSQL database on Docker.
  5. Migrating from Oracle to PostgreSQL – What You Should Know: This blog reviews what you would need to know if you decided to migrate from an Oracle database to PostgreSQL.

P.S. we are still looking for PostgreSQL guest writers to create even more content, if you are interested let us know!

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New PostgreSQL ClusterControl Features in 2018

With four releases in 2018, ClusterControl has been expanding its support for PostgreSQL. Here are some of the top features released in the last year.

  • ClusterControl 1.5.1 (January)
    • Full backup and restore encryption for pg_dump and pg_basebackup
    • Improved user experience to make it easier to deploy and monitor PostgreSQL setups
  • ClusterControl 1.6 (April)
    • Easily deploy and manage PostgreSQL on public cloud instances like AWS, Google Cloud, and Azure
    • New topology viewer for PostgreSQL replication clusters
  • ClusterControl 1.6.1 (June)
    • New cloud deployment wizard for PostgreSQL
    • Automated deployment of synchronous replication slaves
    • PostgreSQL alerts & notifications with ServiceNow
  • ClusterControl 1.6.2 (July)
    • Continuous Archiving and Point-in-Time Recovery (PITR) for PostgreSQL
  • ClusterControl 1.7 (October)
    • Agent-based PostgreSQL monitoring with SCUMM
    • New PostgreSQL performance dashboard


So what does the future hold for PostgreSQL? Well, you don’t have to be a betting woman to know that their scheduled annual release of PostgreSQL 12 will come like clockwork this coming fall with a level of stability that its users have come to expect. It’s knowing that PostgreSQL is a database you can count on that continues to increase adoption and drive its use in the enterprise.

As for Severalnines? You can count on the fact that we will continue to improve support for PostgreSQL.

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