database blues, or what would joshua reynolds say?

Working on a PostgreSQL database with over a thousand records from late eighteenth-century exhibition catalogues of the Royal Academy, I discover I cannot alter the attributes of a column once it’s already been created.

WTF?

It’s true. You have to backup all the data, recreate the table from scratch with the column attributes you want, and then reload your backup.

At least that’s what you have to do with version 6.5.2 of PostgreSQL. It’s possible later versions allow you to do something simpler.

Just a techno-geek entry, dear reader, to bolster my street-cred with the computing crowd. ;-)

Update: On second thought, maybe the fact that I didn’t already know this does nothing for my credibility. Hmm.

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2 thoughts on “database blues, or what would joshua reynolds say?

  1. Well, postgreSQL just happens to be the database that is installed on the server this project is using. Requests for mySQL have fallen on deaf ears. I’m mildly experienced with both, but not enough to know the advantages of one over the other. Any thoughts?

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