[pgpool-hackers: 1974] Proposal to make backend node failover mechanism quorum aware

Muhammad Usama m.usama at gmail.com
Tue Jan 10 23:47:57 JST 2017

Hi Hackers,

This is the proposal to make the failover of backend PostgreSQL nodes
quorum aware to make it more robust and fault tolerant.

Currently Pgpool-II proceeds to failover the backend node as soon as the
health check detects the failure or in case of an error occurred on the
backend connection (when fail_over_on_backend_error is set). This is good
enough for the standalone Pgpool-II server.

But consider the scenario where we have more than one Pgpool-II (Say
Pgpool-A, Pgpool-B and Pgpool-C) in the cluster connected through watchdog
and each Pgpool-II node is configured with two PostgreSQL backends (B1 and

Now if due to some network glitch or an issue, Pgpool-A fails or loses its
network connection with backend B1, The Pgpool-A will detect the failure
and detach (failover) the B1 backend and also pass this information to the
other Pgpool-II nodes (Pgpool-II B and Pgpool-II C), Although the Backend
B1 was perfectly healthy and it was also reachable from Pgpool-B and
Pgpool-C nodes, But still because of a network glitch between Pgpool-A and
Backend B1, it will get detached from the cluster and the worst part is, if
the B1 was a master PostgreSQL (in master-standby configuration), the
Pgpool-II failover would also promote the B2 PostgreSQL node as a new
master, hense making the way for split-brain and/or data corruptions.

So my proposal is that when the Watchdog is configured in Pgpool-II the
backend health check of Pgpool-II should consult with other attached
Pgpool-II nodes over the watchdog to decide if the Backend node is actually
failed or if it is just a localized glitch/false alarm. And the failover on
the node should only be performed, when the majority of cluster members
agrees on the failure of nodes.

This quorum aware architecture of failover will prevents the false
failovers and split-brain scenarios in the Backend nodes.

What are your thoughts and suggestions on this?

Best regards
Muhammad Usama
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://www.sraoss.jp/pipermail/pgpool-hackers/attachments/20170110/8bcddf23/attachment-0001.html>

More information about the pgpool-hackers mailing list