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Speaker photo for Ronan Dunklau

Interview with Ronan Dunklau


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Could you briefly introduce yourself?

Hello! I’m Ronan Dunklau, and I’m an Open Source Developer at Aiven. I’ve been working full time with or on PostgreSQL since 2013.

How do you engage with the PostgreSQL Community?

As an Open Source Developer at Aiven, my job is to work on the PostgreSQL project itself as well as other projects in its ecosystem.

Have you enjoyed previous PostgreSQL Europe conferences, either as an attendee or as a speaker? (PGConf.EU, FOSDEM PGDay, Nordic PGDay, pgDay Paris, PGConf.DE)

PostgreSQL Europe conferences are the best, along with PGCon of course! The first time I’ve been a speaker at a PostgreSQL Europe conference was at 2013 PGConf.EU in Dublin.

What will your talk be about, exactly? Why this topic?

I will be talking about a new open source tool we’re developing at Aiven, PGTracer. The idea is to leverage the eBPF infrastructure to extract PostgreSQL information: showing which queries are running, getting an outline of their execution plan and collecting metrics… The need arose when I needed to collect information from outside Postgres itself, and correlate it with PostgreSQL activity.

What is the audience for your talk?

Both DBAs interested in getting another tool for inspecting a live PostgreSQL backend and developers with an interest in observability, eBPF, ELF file formats…

What existing knowledge should the attendee have?

No hard prerequisites for this session! But you will enjoy it more if you have some knowledge of what eBPF is and what other tracing / profiling tools (like bpftrace or perf) can do so that you can better compare PGTracer.

What is the one feature in PostgreSQL 15 which you like most?

As a proper feature, I’m really happy about the inclusion of the MERGE statement. Otherwise, I’m mostly impressed with how much we are able to improve performance, for example while sorting.

Which other talk at this year’s conference would you like to see?

Honestly, a lot of them! This year’s lineup is really interesting. If I have to pick one: I’m really eager to see Dmitry Dolgov’s talk “Party tricks for PostgreSQL” as it will broach a similar subject to mine.

Which measure, action, feature or activity would—in your eyes—help to accelerate the adoption of PostgreSQL?

It feels like the adoption of PostgreSQL is already going at a really nice pace! Compared to even just a few years back, we have so many companies offering PostgreSQL support, hosting it in the cloud, and so much content aimed at beginners and seasoned DBAs as well…