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InfoQ Homepage News PostgreSQL Interface for Cloud Spanner Now Generally Available

PostgreSQL Interface for Cloud Spanner Now Generally Available

Google Cloud recently announced the general availability of the PostgreSQL interface for Cloud Spanner. The new interface increases the portability of workloads to and from Spanner and provides a globally distributed option to developers already familiar with PostgreSQL.

Announced in preview last autumn, the new functionality adds another option to the Google Standard SQL interface on Google Cloud. While the syntax supported is similar to standard PostgreSQL, workloads relying on stored procedures, extensions, triggers, or non-serializable isolation require rework to run on Spanner.

Justin Makeig, senior product manager at Google Cloud, explains how PostgreSQL is now the de facto standard for operational databases:

Enterprises and digital natives alike are standardizing on PostgreSQL as the common "API" for their operational databases (...) As organizations modernize in the cloud, they are looking to avoid the onerous lock-in associated with last generation's databases and to leverage the industry skills and tools they already have. An increasing number of them are standardizing on PostgreSQL.

To see the differences between the two interfaces, developers should refer to the article Dialect parity between Google Standard SQL and PostgreSQL. Andi Gutmans, VP/GM databases at Google, comments:

This reinforces our commitment to being the most open cloud so customers have flexibility and choice on when and where to run. Spanner delivers virtually unlimited scale with market-leading 5 9s availability and no maintenance windows.

Makeig explains how portability helps regulated industries:

The schemas and queries that you write against Spanner's PostgreSQL interface will run mostly without modification in another PostgreSQL environment, either in Google Cloud or elsewhere. This portability is especially important for industries like financial services where emerging regulations and industry guidelines require critical services to demonstrate exit strategies from essential vendors to ensure business continuity.

Google Cloud recently announced the preview of AlloyDB for PostgreSQL, a managed PostgreSQL-compatible service targeting enterprise deployments. CockroachDB, Yugabyte, and Amazon Aurora also offer PostgreSQL compatible distributed database-as-a-service. Reassuring existing customers, Makeig adds:

Google is fully committed to continued support and evolution of Google Standard SQL. Spanner's ANSI SQL dialect and ecosystem are the best choice for teams already familiar with Google Cloud. Along with a wide range of functionality, it provides compatibility with BigQuery's SQL.

The new PostgreSQL interface is configured per database at creation time. Administrators can provision and manage PostgreSQL databases by using the existing console, APIs, and gcloud CLI.

Running the new granular instances, customers can run a Spanner database starting at 65 USD/month, or at 40 USD/month with a three-year commitment. There are no additional costs associated with the new PostgreSQL interface.

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