This guide provides information for system administrators and database superusers responsible for administering a Greenplum Database system.

About This Guide

This guide contains reference documentation for command-line utilities and client programs. This guide is intended for system and database administrators responsible for managing a Greenplum Database system.

This guide assumes knowledge of Linux/UNIX system administration, database management systems, database administration, and structured query language (SQL).

Because Greenplum Database is based on PostgreSQL 8.2.15, this guide assumes some familiarity with PostgreSQL. Links and cross-references to PostgreSQL documentation are provided throughout this guide for features that are similar to those in Greenplum Database.

About the Greenplum Database Documentation Set

The Greenplum Database 4.3 server documentation set consists of the following guides.

Table 1. Greenplum Database server documentation set

Guide Name


Greenplum Database Administrator Guide

Information for administering the Greenplum Database system and managing databases. It covers topics such as Greenplum Database architecture and concepts and everyday system administration tasks such as configuring the server, monitoring system activity, enabling high-availability, backing up and restoring databases, and expanding the system. Database administration topics include configuring access control, creating databases and database objects, loading data into databases, writing queries, managing workloads, and monitoring and troubleshooting performance.

Greenplum Database Reference Guide

Reference information for Greenplum Database systems: SQL commands, system catalogs, environment variables, character set support, datatypes, the Greenplum MapReduce specification, postGIS extension, server parameters, the gp_toolkit administrative schema, and SQL 2008 support.

Greenplum Database Utility Guide

Reference information for command-line utilities, client programs, and Oracle compatibility functions.

Greenplum Database Installation Guide

Information and instructions for installing and initializing a Greenplum Database system.

Document Conventions

The following conventions are used throughout the Greenplum Database documentation to help you identify certain types of information.

Command Syntax Conventions

Table 2. Command Syntax Conventions

Text Convention



{ }

Within command syntax, curly braces group related command options. Do not type the curly braces.

FROM { 'filename' | STDIN }

[ ]

Within command syntax, square brackets denote optional arguments. Do not type the brackets.



Within command syntax, an ellipsis denotes repetition of a command, variable, or option. Do not type the ellipsis.

DROP TABLE name [, ...]


Within command syntax, the pipe symbol denotes an "OR" relationship. Do not type the pipe symbol.


$ system_command

# root_system_command

=> gpdb_command

=# su_gpdb_command

Denotes a command prompt - do not type the prompt symbol. $ and # denote terminal command prompts. => and =# denote Greenplum Database interactive program command prompts (psql or gpssh, for example).

$ createdb mydatabase

# chown gpadmin -R /datadir

=> SELECT * FROM mytable;

=# SELECT * FROM pg_database;

Getting Support

Pivotal/Greenplum support, product, and licensing information can be obtained as follows.

Product information and Technical Support

For technical support, documentation, release notes, software updates, or for information about Pivotal products, licensing, and services, go to