Pivotal Knowledge Base


Whether to Run "kill -9" against a Greenplum Database


  • Pivotal Greenplum Database (GPDB) all supported versions
  • Operating System (OS)- All supported


kill -9 should not be run against a Greenplum system.


Under no circumstances should you run "kill -9" against any Greenplum process. 

Running kill -9 may result in the following:

  • Data loss
  • Catalog corruption
  • System outages
  • Undefined behavior 

Therefore, never run "kill -9" against any Greenplum Database process.


  • Avatar
    Gurupreet Singh Bhatia

    What are the other option available if we are not able to kill any unix process like backup or gptransfer process, will it safe to use kill-2 ot kill only

  • Avatar
    Marc Paquette

    Hi Gurupreet,
    That's a great question. This recommendation really only applies to the postgres process running the databases. The client tools can be terminated. I'd start with a normal kill on client tools, then move up to a kill -11.

    Marc Paquette

  • Avatar
    Gurupreet Singh Bhatia

    Thanks Marc

  • Avatar
    Faisal Ali

    Just to add kill -11 also reset postmaster so use it only has the last resort ( but its not severe as kill -9 where it crashes everything )

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