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Speaker Interview: Dimitri Fontaine

pgloader, your migration companion   Wednesday 14:00   Baltic I

Twitter: @tapoueh GitHub: dimitri Google+: DimitriFontaine Blog:

Could you briefly introduce yourself?

Hi! I am Dimitri Fontaine, and I've been contributing to PostgreSQL features such as Extensions support and Event Triggers. I also write and maintain the pgloader migration utility, that is meant to allow for a fully automated (as in CI/CD) migration from MySQL, MS SQL or SQLite to PostgreSQL.

I'm also writing a book that teaches SQL to developers, it's soon to be available at

Have you enjoyed previous conferences, either as attendee or as speaker?

I think I've only missed a single PostgreSQL Europe conference, last year in Tallin. If I remember correctly I attended most of the other editions as a speaker. And yes indeed, I've been enjoying every edition of the!

It's a great opportunity to meet with the PostgreSQL community, a bunch of nice people, all very smart and who knows how to share a good time together in the best conditions for everybody.

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

My talk is about "pgloader, your migration companion" and is meant to help people successfully migrate their projects to PostgreSQL. When attending the conference and running non-PostgreSQL systems, you will invariably want to benefit from all those awesome features everybody is talking about, from the simplified just-works production maintenance to the extended SQL facilities that you can actually use, thanks to good performance characteristics.

So you want to migrate from MySQL, or MS SQL, or SQLite, say, to PostgreSQL. But the steps on how to do that without too much risk for the running application aren't very clear to you, and maybe you think it can't be done without a complete rewrite of the code and a huge maintenance window that you can't afford. In my talk, you will get some tools and more importantly a methodology to approach the migration and guarantee technical success, on budget!

What is the audience for your talk?

Developers, DBA, or C-level executives who need to plan a migration (or several) to PostgreSQL, and wonder how best to approach such a project.

What existing knowledge should the attendee have?

Basic usage of their current SQL system, and some knowledge about why PostgreSQL is best for them. I mean the talk won't insist much on why PostgreSQL is the world's most advanced Open Source database, you might want to already be familiar why before getting to know how to migrate to it!

You recently wrote a book about PostgreSQL? What is the title, who should read this book? And is there additional information available online?

"Mastering PostgreSQL in Application Development" is a book that teaches SQL to developers, in order to replace thousands of lines of code with simple queries. It covers basic and advanced SQL techniques and also addresses the integration of SQL as a programming language in your application code and workflow: version control, unit testing, code reviewing and deploying are all addressed.

Also, all the SQL queries from the book, the 265 of them, are written against real-world data sets available as Open Data, so that you can run them at home, edit them, change them, and play with the data yourself. SQL is way easier to grasp when the teaching material refers to real data sets!

For more information about the book, please see The book should be available around or just after the conference, subscribe to the website to stay tuned!