Background: I am "building" a GIS with PostgreSQL 9.2.4 / PostGIS 2 as the database and QGIS 1.8.0 as the geographic application. There will be multiple users accessing, editing and viewing the data at the same time.


  1. Is version editing automatically enforced in PostgreSQL 9.2.4 / PostGIS 2?
  2. Is it possible to enable/enforce version editing and if yes how?

I have had a look at pgVersion for PostgreSQL 9.2.4 / PostGIS 2 and the QGIS pgVersion plugin. However, if I understand correctly (reading the help files and testing it), pgVersion only allows editing of cell values of existing columns and also no new geographic features can be added.

  • PostgreSQL uses Slony for replication...I haven't tried it yet, it should apply to PostGIS features as well... Jul 23, 2013 at 16:07
  • 3
    Do you want to support version editing with something similar to ESRI versioning or just having multiple editors editing the same db? The latter just works, the former requires infrastructure that is still in the works in the open source arena. I myself wrote a versioning system on top of postgis for our work in AmigoCloud. The closest you get to something similar is GeoGit, but it has its disadvantages for certain workflows. Jul 25, 2013 at 17:39
  • I would prefer versioning similar to ESRI versioning. However, my database will only be a prototype, so for now just having multiple editors edit the same database will be adequate. Will also have a look at GeoGit.
    – PyMapr
    Jul 27, 2013 at 12:01
  • I wonder if @PaulRamsey has anything they could chime in on this subject? Aug 2, 2013 at 4:42
  • Or possibly @LR1234567 might have some ideas? Aug 2, 2013 at 4:43

3 Answers 3


Yes it seems that PostgreSQL/PostGIS does allow multiple users to edit and view the same data at the same time automatically, whether it is viewed or edited in PostgreSQL/PostGIS or QGIS. However, if not properly managed this, apparently, may result in overlapping and/or corrupt features.

Here are the links from which I made my conclusions:

Please note that the question and answers in the above links were asked/answered about 5 years ago, which mean they point to earlier program versions. However, I cannot imagine the newer versions of PostgreSQL/PostGIS not supporting multi-user editing (might even have been enhanced).

Update: For those using QGIS 1.8.0, under the tab 'Table' in DB Manager there is a Versioning option. However, I keep getting an error that states 'language "SQL" does not exist.'. Any suggestions on how to bypass or fix this error? Does anyone else have the same problem/error?


If you are using Qgis there is a plugin for versioning using a postgres database https://plugins.qgis.org/plugins/FastVersion/ The plugin also allows to administrate user permissions on the versions. You could set one user per version, and then consolidate the changes in only one version, with the post function.


Definely yes, you can do versioning by the use of triggers http://www.postgresql.org/docs/9.1/static/triggers.html on geographic tables.

I use this approach to save temporal data so I could issue queries that would create a snapshot of records at given time.

  1. Versioning editing is not enforced by what I know.

  2. Yes, this can be supported. There will be several responses based on the user needs. You could use the http://www.pgadmin.org/docs/1.16/pgagent.html and schedule a job to copy live data to versioned table on a daily window as a simple example.

Or you could use a shadowed table that records edits of records when those events happen.

Postgresql has all resources you need to do that but you will need skills with SQL language.

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