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Migrate PostgreSQL® databases to Aiven using the console

You can migrate PostgreSQL® databases to Aiven using either CLI (aiven-db-migrate) or Aiven Console. This article addresses the latter scenario by providing guidelines on how to use Aiven Console to migrate PostgreSQL databases to the Aiven platform.


For the other migration method (using aiven-db-migrate), see Migrate to Aiven for PostgreSQL® with aiven-db-migrate.

About migrating via console

The console migration tool enables you to migrate PostgreSQL databases to managed PostgreSQL clusters in your Aiven organization. You can migrate the following:

  • Existing on-premise PostgreSQL databases
  • Cloud-hosted PostgreSQL databases
  • Managed PostgreSQL database clusters on Aiven.

With the console migration tool, you can migrate your data using either the continuous migration method (default and recommended) or the one-time snapshot method (pg_dump).

Continuous migration

The continuous migration method is used by default in the console and taken as a method to follow in this guide. The continuous migration keeps the source database operational during the migration. This method uses logical replication, which enables data transfer not only for the data that has already been there in the source database when triggering the migration but also for any data written to the source database during the migration.


Before you use the logical replication, make sure you know and understand all the restrictions it has. For details, check out Logical replication restrictions.

Using the continuous migration requires either superuser permissions or the aiven_extras extension installed on the source database.

Expand to check out how to verify that you have superuser permissions.

Use psql to run the \du command:

Expected output
Role name |                      Attributes                            |                 Member of
_source_db | Superuser, Replication | {}
example | Create role, Create DB, Replication, Bypass RLS | {pg_read_all_stats,pg_stat_scan_tables,pg_signal_backend}
postgres | Superuser, Create role, Create DB, Replication, Bypass RLS | {}

Identify your role name in the Role name column and check if it has the Superuser attribute assigned in the Attributes column. If not, request it from your system administrator.

No superuser permissions? Install aiven_extras.

If you don't have superuser permissions, but you still want to use the continuous migration, you can install the aiven_extras extension on the source database using the following command:


Dump migration

pg_dump is a point-in-time snapshot. The data written to the source database during the migration process (after initiating the dump) is not migrated to the target database. When you start a dump migration, make sure no data is written to the source database by the time the dumping process is over.

When you trigger the migration setup in the console and initial checks detect that your source database does not support the logical replication, you are notified about it via wizard. To continue with the migration, you can select the alternative pg_dump migration method in the wizard.

No superuser permissions and no aiven_extras? Migrate using the dump method.

Without superuser permissions or aiven_extras installed, you cannot use the logical replication and migrate in a continuous manner. In that case, you can migrate your database using the dump method if you have the following permissions:

  • Connect
  • Select on all tables in the database
  • Select on all the sequences in the database

For the instruction on how to perform a dump, skip a few sections that follow and go straight to Migrate a database.


  • To use the default continuous migration method in the console, you need to have the logical replication enabled on your source database either with superuser permissions or the aiven_extras extension.
  • Source database's hostname or IP address needs to be accessible from the public Internet.
  • You need to have the following source database's credentials and reference data:
    • Public hostname or connection string, or IP address used to connect to the database
    • Port used to connect to the database
    • Username (for a user with superuser permissions)
    • Password.
  • Firewalls protecting the source database and the target databases need to be open to allow the traffic and connection between the databases (update or disable the firewalls temporarily if needed).

Pre-configure the source

  • Allow remote connections on the source database.

    Check that your database allows all remote connections by using psql to run the following query:

    SHOW listen_addresses;

    If enabled, you can expect the following output (with listen_addresses set to *):

    (1 row)

    If the command line returns something different, enable remote connections for your database with the following query:

    ALTER SYSTEM SET listen_addresses = '*';
  • Change your IPv4 local connection to to allow all incoming IP addresses.

    Find the pg_hba.conf configuration file using the following query:

    SHOW hba_file;

    Open pg_hba.conf in a text editor of your choice, for example, Visual Studio Code.

    code pg_hba.conf

    Under IPv4 local connections, find and replace the IP address with

    # TYPE  DATABASE        USER            ADDRESS                 METHOD

    # IPv4 local connections:
    host all all md5
    # IPv6 local connections:
    host all all ::/0 md5

    For more details on the configuration file's syntax, see The pg_hba.conf File.

  • Enable the logical replication.

    For cloud-hosted databases, the logical replication is usually enabled by default, while databases hosted on-premises can have the logical replication not enabled.

    Check that the logical replication is enabled using psql to run the following query:

    SHOW wal_level;
    Expected output if enabled
    (1 row)

    If the command prompt returns something different, enable the logical replication in your database by setting wal_level to logical:

    ALTER SYSTEM SET wal_level = logical;
  • Set the maximum number of replication slots to a value that is equal to or greater than the number of databases in the PostgreSQL server.

    Check the current status using the following query:

    SHOW max_replication_slots;

    You can expect the following output:

    <number of slots, for example, 8>
    (1 row)

    If number of slots is smaller than the number of databases in your PostgreSQL server, modify it using the following query:

    ALTER SYSTEM SET max_replication_slots = use_your_number;

    where use_your_number stands for the number of databases in your server.

  • Restart your PostgreSQL server using the following command:

    sudo service postgresql restart

Migrate a database

  1. Log in to the Aiven Console.
  2. On the Services page, select the service where your target database is located.
  3. From the sidebar on your service's page, select Service settings.
  4. On the Service settings page, go to the Service management section, and select Import database.
  5. Guided by the migration wizard, go through all the migration steps.

Step 1: Configure

Get familiar with the guidelines provided in the PostgreSQL migration configuration guide window, make sure your configuration is in line with them, and select Get started.

Step 2: Validation

  1. To establish a connection to your source database, enter required database details in the Database connection and validation window:
    • Hostname
    • Port
    • Database name
    • Username
    • Password
  2. Select the SSL encryption (recommended) checkbox.
  3. Optionally, exclude specific databases from the migration by entering their names (separated with spaces) into the Exclude databases field.
  4. Select Run check.
Cannot migrate the database using logical replication?

If your connection test returns information that you cannot migrate the database using the logical replication due to the missing superuser permissions or aiven_extras extension, you can still migrate your data using the dump method.

To start a dump, select checkbox Start the migration using a one-time snapshot (dump method).

Step 3: Migration

If all the checks pass with no error messages, you are ready to start the migration. Before you do that, make sure you understand its limitations and consequences.

Impact on target databases

It's recommended to migrate into an empty database. If you migrate into a populated database, colliding tables with primary keys are not affected, but tables without primary keys are appended. Check other limitations in Logical replication restrictions.

Trigger the migration by selecting Start migration in the Database migration window.

While the migration is in progress, you can take the following actions:

  • Let it proceed until completed by selecting Close window, which closes the wizard. You can come back to check the status at any time on the Service settings page > the Service management section > Import database.
  • Write to the target database.
  • Discontinue the migration by selecting Stop migration. Although the data already migrated is retained, you cannot restart the stopped process. To continue with the migration, you need to start a new migration process from scratch.

To avoid conflicts and replication issues while the migration is ongoing, take the following precautions:

  • Do not write to any tables in the target database that are being processed by the migration tool.
  • Do not change the replication configuration of the source database manually. Do not modify wal_level or reduce max_replication_slots.
  • Do not make database changes that could disrupt or prevent the connection between the source database and the target database. Do not change the listen address of the source database and do not modify or enable firewalls on the databases.
Migration attempt failed?

If you happen to get such a notification, investigate potential causes of the failure and try to fix the issues. When you are ready, trigger the migration again by selecting Start over.

Step 4: Close

As soon as the wizard communicates the completion of the migration, check if there's also information about the replication mode being active.

Replication mode active

This information in the wizard means that your data has been transferred to Aiven, but some new data is still continuously being synced between the connected databases.

  • If there is no replication in progress, select Close connection in the migration wizard to finalize the migration process. As a result, on the Service settings page > the Service management section > Import database, you'll see the Ready tag.
  • If the replication mode is active, you can select Keep replicating. As a result, on the Service settings page > the Service management section > Import database, you'll see the Syncing tag, and you'll be able to check the status of the migration process by selecting Status update.

You have successfully migrated your PostgreSQL database into you Aiven for PostgreSQL service.