Upsert Methods for PostgreSQL

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Update: PostgreSQL 9.5 has been released with INSERT .. ON CONFLICT UPDATE support.

PostgreSQL has no “upsert” or “replace” or “insert .. on duplicate key update” or “merge into” construct to conditionally either insert a new row, or if a row with the key already exists, to either update the existing row with the new values, or first delete the old row and then insert a new one. This has been discussed many times in the posgresql developers mailing lists, and plans to implement the SQL standard MERGE operation have been devised. But there is still no such functionality in PostgreSQL as of version 9.3. Here are some examples on how to implement the functionality in different ways, using either a function, a trigger function or a rule. None of them are perfect. There are trade-offs to be made. Continue reading Upsert Methods for PostgreSQL