Per-Database Setup

    Setting up a working master-slave replication requires two ArangoDB instances:

    • master: this is the instance where all data-modification operations should be directed to
    • slave: this is the instance that replicates the data from the master. We will start a replication applier_on it, and it will fetch data from the master database’s _write-ahead log and apply its operations locally

    For the following example setup, we will use the instance tcp:// as the master, and the instance tcp:// as a slave.

    The goal is to have all data from the database system_ on _mastertcp:// be replicated to the database __system on the slave__tcp://

    On the master, nothing special needs to be done, as all write operations will automatically belogged in the master’s write-ahead log (WAL).

    To make the replication copy the initial data from the master to the slave and start thecontinuous replication on the slave, there is an all-in-one command:

    The following example demonstrates how to use the command for setting up replicationfor the _system database. Note that it should be run on the slave and not themaster:

    1. require("@arangodb/replication").setupReplication({
    2. endpoint: "tcp://",
    3. username: "myuser",
    4. password: "mypasswd",
    5. verbose: false,
    6. incremental: true,
    7. autoResync: true
    8. });

    The command will return when the initial synchronization is finished and the continuous replicationhas been started, or in case the initial synchronization has failed.

    If the initial synchronization is successful, the command will store the given configuration onthe slave. It also configures the continuous replication to start automatically if the slave is restarted, i.e. autoStart is set to true.

    If the command is run while the slave’s replication applier is already running, it will firststop the running applier, drop its configuration and do a resynchronization of data with themaster. It will then use the provided configration, overwriting any previously existing replicationconfiguration on the slave.

    The initial synchronization and continuous replication applier can also be started separately.To start replication on the slave, make sure there currently is no replication applier running.

    1. db._useDatabase("_system");

    The stop operation will terminate any replication activity in the _system database on the slave.

    After that, the initial synchronization can be run. It will copy the collections from the masterto the slave, overwriting existing data. To run the initial synchronization, execute the following commands on the slave:

    Username and password only need to be specified when the master requires authentication.To check what the synchronization is currently doing, supply set the verbose option to true.If set, the synchronization will create log messages with the current synchronization status.

    Warning: The sync command will replace data in the slave database with data from the master database! Only execute these commands if you have verified you are on the correct server, in the correct database!

    The sync operation will return an attribute named lastLogTick which we’ll need to note. Thelast log tick will be used as the starting point for subsequent replication activity. Let’sassume we got the following last log tick:

    1. {
    2. "lastLogTick" : "40694126",
    3. ...
    4. }

    The initial synchronization via the sync command may take a long time to complete. The shellwill block until the slave has completed the initial synchronization or until an error occurs.By default, the sync command in the ArangoShell will poll the slave for a status update every10 seconds.

    Optionally the sync command can be made non-blocking by setting its async option to true.In this case, the sync command will return instantly with an id string, and the initial synchronization will run detached on the master. To fetch the current status of the sync progress from the ArangoShell, the getSyncResult function can be used as follows:

    1. db._useDatabase("_system");
    2. var replication = require("@arangodb/replication");
    3. var id = replication.sync({
    4. endpoint: "tcp://",
    5. password: "mypasswd",
    6. async: true
    7. });
    8. /* now query the status of our operation */
    9. print(replication.getSyncResult(id));

    getSyncResult will return false as long as the synchronization is not complete, and return thesynchronization result otherwise.

    When the initial synchronization is finished, the continuous replication applier can be started usingthe last log tick provided by the sync command. Before starting it, there is at least one configuration option to consider: replication on the slave will be running until the slave gets shut down. When the slave server gets restarted, replication will be turned off again. To change this, we first need to configure the slave’s replication applier and set itsautoStart attribute.

    Here’s the command to configure the replication applier with several options, including theautoStart attribute:

    There is a separate option includeFoxxQueues for controlling whether Foxx queue jobs from the systemcollections _jobs and _queues collections should be replicated. Documents from these collections are not replicated by default in order to avoid execution of Foxx queue jobs on the slave.

    The requireFromPresent attribute controls whether the applier will start synchronizing in caseit detects that the master cannot provide data for the initial tick value provided by the slave. This may be the case if the master does not have a big enough backlog of historic WAL logfiles,and when the replication is re-started after a longer pause. When requireFromPresent is set to true, then the replication applier will check at start whether the start tick from which it starts or resumes replication is still present on the master. If not, then there would be data loss. If requireFromPresent is true, the replication applier will abort with an appropriate error message. If set to false, then the replication applier will still start, and ignore the data loss.

    The autoResync option can be used in conjunction with the requireFromPresent option as follows:when both requireFromPresent and autoResync are set to true and the master cannot provide the log data the slave had requested, the replication applier will stop as usual. But due to the factthat autoResync is set to true, the slave will automatically trigger a full resync of all data with the master. After that, the replication applier will go into continuous replication mode again.Additionally, setting autoResync to true will trigger a full re-synchronization of data whenthe continuous replication is started and detects that there is no start tick value.

    Note that automatic re-synchronization (autoResync option set to true) may transfer a lot of data from the master to the slave and can therefore be expensive. Still it’s turned on here sothere’s less need for manual intervention.

    The autoResyncRetries option can be used to control the number of resynchronization retries that will be performed in a row when automatic resynchronization is enabled and kicks in. Setting this to 0 will effectively disable autoResync. Setting it to some other value will limit the number of retries that are performed. This helps preventing endless retries in case resynchronizations always fail.

    Now it’s time to start the replication applier on the slave using the last log tick we gotbefore:

    1. db._useDatabase("_system");
    2. require("@arangodb/replication").applier.start("40694126");

    This will replicate all operations happening in the master’s system database and apply themon the slave, too.

    After that, you should be able to monitor the state and progress of the replication applier by executing the state command on the slave server:

    Please note that stopping the replication applier on the slave using the stop command should be avoided. The reason is that currently ongoing transactions (that have partly beenreplicated to the slave) will be need to be restarted after a restart of the replicationapplier. Stopping and restarting the replication applier on the slave should thus only be performed if there is certainty that the master is currently fully idle and all transactions have been replicated fully.

    Note that while a slave has only partly executed a transaction from the master, it might keepa write lock on the collections involved in the transaction.