Type: enum
Default: fdatasync
Context: sighup
Restart: false
Values: [fsync, fdatasync, open_sync, open_datasync]

Method used for forcing WAL updates out to disk. If fsync is off then this setting is irrelevant, since WAL file updates will not be forced out at all. Possible values are:

  • open_datasync (write WAL files with open() option O_DSYNC)

  • fdatasync (call fdatasync() at each commit)

  • fsync (call fsync() at each commit)

  • fsync_writethrough (call fsync() at each commit, forcing write-through of any disk write cache)

  • open_sync (write WAL files with open() option O_SYNC)

Not all of these choices are available on all platforms. The default is the first method in the above list that is supported by the platform, except that fdatasync is the default on Linux and FreeBSD. The default is not necessarily ideal; it might be necessary to change this setting or other aspects of your system configuration in order to create a crash-safe configuration or achieve optimal performance. These aspects are discussed in wal-reliability. This parameter can only be set in the postgresql.conf file or on the server command line.


On install, PostgreSQL figures out the best method for your OS. It's pretty good at this point; don't change the default. Note that the value of "fsync" shown in your postgresql.conf file is not necessarily the setting the server is using; try SHOW instead.