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Getting started with pgexporter

First of all, make sure that pgexporter is installed and in your path by using "pgexporter -?". You should see
pgexporter 0.4.0
  Prometheus exporter for PostgreSQL

  pgexporter [ -c CONFIG_FILE ] [ -u USERS_FILE ] [ -d ]

  -c, --config CONFIG_FILE    Set the path to the pgexporter.conf file
  -u, --users USERS_FILE      Set the path to the pgexporter_users.conf file
  -A, --admins ADMINS_FILE    Set the path to the pgexporter_admins.conf file
  -Y, --yaml METRICS_FILE_DIR Set the path to YAML file/directory
  -d, --daemon                Run as a daemon
  -V, --version               Display version information
  -?, --help                  Display help
If you don't have pgexporter in your path see our README on how to compile and install pgexporter in your system.


Lets create a simple configuration file called pgexporter.conf with the content
host = *
metrics = 5002

log_type = file
log_level = info
log_path = /tmp/pgexporter.log

unix_socket_dir = /tmp/

host = localhost
port = 5432
user = pgexporter
In our main section called [pgexporter] we setup pgexporter to listen on all network addresses. We will enable Prometheus metrics on port 5002. Logging will be performed at "info" level and put in a file called "/tmp/pgexporter.log". Last we specify the location of the "unix_socket_dir" used for management operations.

Next we create a section called [primary] which has the information about our PostgreSQL instance. In this case it is running on "localhost" on port "5432" and we will use the "pgexporter" user account to connect.

The "pgexporter" user must have the "pg_monitor" role and have access to the "postgres" database, so for example

GRANT pg_monitor TO pgexporter;
and in pg_hba.conf
local   postgres    pgexporter                      scram-sha-256
host    postgres    pgexporter     scram-sha-256
host    postgres    pgexporter     ::1/128          scram-sha-256

We will need a user vault for the "pgexporter" account, so the following commands will add a master key, and the "pgexporter" password

pgexporter-admin master-key
pgexporter-admin -f pgexporter_users.conf add-user

We are now ready to run pgexporter. See Configuration for all configuration options.


We will run pgexporter using the command
pgexporter -c pgexporter.conf -u pgexporter_users.conf
If this doesn't give an error, then we are ready to use the Prometheus endpoint.

pgexporter is stopped by pressing Ctrl-C (^C) in the console where you started it, or by sending the SIGTERM signal to the process using "kill pid".

Run-time administration

pgexporter has a run-time administration tool called pgexporter-cli.

You can see the commands it supports by using "pgexporter-cli -?" which will give

pgexporter-cli 0.4.0
  Command line utility for pgexporter

  pgexporter-cli [ -c CONFIG_FILE ] [ COMMAND ]

  -c, --config CONFIG_FILE Set the path to the pgexporter.conf file
  -h, --host HOST          Set the host name
  -p, --port PORT          Set the port number
  -U, --user USERNAME      Set the user name
  -P, --password PASSWORD  Set the password
  -L, --logfile FILE       Set the log file
  -v, --verbose            Output text string of the result
  -V, --version            Display version information
  -?, --help               Display help

  is-alive                 Is pgexporter alive
  stop                     Stop pgexporter
  status                   Status of pgexporter
  details                  Detailed status of pgexporter
  reload                   Reload the configuration
  reset                    Reset the Prometheus statistics
To stop pgexporter you would use
pgexporter-cli -c pgexporter.conf stop
Check the outcome of the operations by verifying the exit code, like
echo $?
or by using the -v flag.

If pgexporter has both Transport Layer Security (TLS) and "management" enabled then pgexporter-cli can connect with TLS using the files ~/.pgexporter/pgexporter.key (must be 0600 permission), ~/.pgexporter/pgexporter.crt and ~/.pgexporter/root.crt.


pgexporter has an administration tool called pgexporter-admin, which is used to control user registration with pgexporter.

You can see the commands it supports by using "pgexporter-admin -?" which will give

pgexporter-admin 0.4.0
  Administration utility for pgexporter

  pgexporter-admin [ -f FILE ] [ COMMAND ]

  -f, --file FILE         Set the path to a user file
  -U, --user USER         Set the user name
  -P, --password PASSWORD Set the password for the user
  -g, --generate          Generate a password
  -l, --length            Password length
  -V, --version           Display version information
  -?, --help              Display help

  master-key              Create or update the master key
  add-user                Add a user
  update-user             Update a user
  remove-user             Remove a user
  list-users              List all users
In order to set the master key for all users you can use
pgexporter-admin -g master-key
The master key must be at least 8 characters.

Then use the other commands to add, update, remove or list the current user names, f.ex.

pgexporter-admin -f pgexporter_users.conf add-user

Next Steps

Next steps in improving pgexporter's configuration could be
  • Update pgexporter.conf with the required settings for your system
  • Enable Transport Layer Security v1.2+ (TLS)
See Configuration for more information on these subjects.


There are some short tutorials available to help you better understand and configure pgexporter:


pgexporter community hopes that you find the project interesting.

Feel free to

All contributions are most welcome !

Consider giving the project a star on GitHub if you find it useful.