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September 29, 2023
Updated October 1, 2023

How to Backup and Restore in a PostgreSQL?

Databases Linux


The modern information system have many requirements for effectiveness and stability work. One of this fault tolerance, which provide protect from attack on integrity and availability, technical issue and another different incident, that can corrupt sufficiently data. For using tools and utilities we need to determine area of usage, in that instruction we will consider reservation and backup data in DBMS PostgreSQL through the proprietary and open-source utility.

Best practice

We can have database with different size, structure and volume, but we need to make full integrity backup and restore that properly. First utility that we can use it's pg_dump and psql or pg_restore. It use mechanism of read currently databases and convert to the command in the text file, therefore for input at the utility we indicate DB, for output we get text file.

That method have several advantages: version consistency, simplicity on export step and there isn't requirement for privilege rights in the system. For use that command type of backup, first of all we need to check there are databases and choose needed object:

List of DB
Screenshot №1 — List of DB

Let's make sure, how does the data look like? Type command below:

SELECT * FROM customers;
Screenshot №2 — Content

We have test record in the DB with theoretical user's data, we use pg_dump utility with option: -U for determine user of DBMS, -d identify database and for remote administration we can use -h and -p parameters. Host and port accordance:

pg_dump -U postgres -d db12 > backup.sql
Screenshot №3 — Backup

Also we can use sequences of command for completing that task:

ssh user@hostname -p 5432  pg_dump -U postgres -d db12 > backup.sql

Replace username, hostname and port for your desirable configuration. If you want to backup and restore DB rapidly between several server, then enter that:

pg_dump -h db_name | psql -h db_name

First part allowed connect to the server with db and by using pipe redirect output to the target server with command after separated sign.

And using command scp we can transfer db:

scp ./backup.sql root@
Screenshot №4 — SCP

We should create database and restore content by the command below:


Then restore with psql command:

psql -U postgres -d db12 < backup.sql
Screenshot №5 — Restore

Make sure integrity of content in the DB:

SELECT * FROM customers;
Screenshot №6 — Result

If database have a lot of data and great size, use split and zip-utility for transfer pices of data:

pg_dump name_db | gzip > name_archive.gz
gunzip -c name_archive.gz | psql name_db

And split with syntax below:

pg_dump name_db | split -b 4G - name_file
cat name_file | psql name_db

That help for more effectiveness transfer data in process of backup.


By following these practices and utilizing the recommended commands and utilities, one can effectively and efficiently manage data backup and restoration in PostgreSQL, thereby ensuring the stability and reliability of the modern information system in the face of potential challenges and threats.

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