Working with Postgres Extensions in Azure Cosmos DB for PostgreSQL while Scaling Nodes


Yesterday, I did a presentation for the Azure Cosmos DB Global User Group on Azure Cosmos DB for PostgreSQL. I mentioned in the PostGIS part that I ran into an issue, so I wanted to describe it here.

Problem: I installed PostGIS on my single-node cluster without issues. However, I scaled my cluster to 2 nodes afterwards. When I ran the query that uses ST_X and ST_Y from PostGIS, I got the following error:

ERROR:  type "public.geometry" does not exist
CONTEXT:  while executing command on

When I read the CONTEXT message, I realized by the w# reference that the worker nodes didn’t have PostGIS installed. When you scale the nodes – at least in this case, it doesn’t enable the extensions over there.

My Solution

I looked at the PostgreSQL extensions in Azure Cosmos DB for PostgreSQL page to see if there was guidance there, but I saw nothing there. I did make note, though, that create_extension() works for the PostgreSQL command CREATE EXTENSION.

So then I looked at the PostgreSQL documentation to see if there was a DROP equivalent – because SQL shows patterns of DROP statements that match CREATE statements. I came across DROP EXTENSION. So this works on a single node… will this also work with the distributed cluster?

So I guessed that drop_extension() might also exist in Azure Cosmos DB for PostgreSQL. It does! And it worked! I dropped the extension and then recreated it, which created it on all of my nodes – 1 coordinator node and 2 worker nodes. This is what I had to run:

SELECT drop_extension('postgis');
SELECT create_extension('postgis');

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