The PostgreSQL project has released version 8.4 of the open source database management software, with more than 290 additions and changes to features.
The most numerous updates are for administrators, with new or tweaked administration and monitoring tools and commands, the PostgreSQL Global Development Group said in its launch statement on Tuesday. The project spent 16 months working on the new version of the database software.
PostgreSQL 8.4 comes with parallel database restore, a faster mechanism for recovering from backup. It also provides per-column permissions, which give administrators more control over who can access sensitive data, and per-database collation support, designed to make the database work better in multilingual environments.
In addition, new monitoring tools should allow businesses to analyse queries on the database better, according to the project.
Version 8.4 also includes features designed to make data analysis easier, including windowing functions, common table expressions and recursive queries. According to the project, it has made enhancements to stored procedures that are designed to make database server programming simpler.
A new upgrade mechanism promises to allow businesses to update from version 8.3 to 8.4 without extensive downtime.
Last year, a study by research company Forrester Research found that the market for open source databases like PostgreSQL was booming due to new workloads such as RFID projects, rich web applications and small portals.