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Neon Serverless Postgres is generally available (neon.tech)
324 points by refset 32 days ago | hide | past | favorite | 218 comments

I tried Neon a few months ago when attempting to switch away from a self hosted db. It was a horrible experience, customer support was unhelpful, it was glitchy, slow, and laggy, and even before the price increase their pricing was way too high.

This has not been my experience.

I've migrated my customer's workloads over to neon's managed postrgres and it's been consistent and reliable for the use case.

I have nightly backups pushed to Cloudflare R2 triggered by a GitHub action for disaster recovery but, to date, I haven't had to touch those.

Curious about your self-hosted db - was it also Postgres? How much had you played with pg before you tried Neon? Can you expand what you mean by 'glitchy, slow and laggy'? Slow connection due to cold starts? Scale-up? General inconsistency in performance? What kind of data volumes were you working with?

I ask because my experience with Neon has been completely different to what you just described. Ever since their 'closed beta' days, it has always 'just worked'. Their CLI has been great, none of my automation has ever bombed out without good reason, and I've never seen it cost me more than I expected. Notably, I was also able to self-host it with relative ease, and found that they actually encouraged people to do so. (In contrast, there are a number of similar 'open source' offerings such as Supabase that I've tried self-hosting, and found that while their core codebase is on GH, it is extremely difficult to deploy outside of their own environment. Not intended as a dig at Supabase, they do some really great work and contribute a ton back to the Postgres community - I'm just using them as a relevant example).

As an aside, I've also met people from Neon at various conferences, including co-founder Heikki. They all struck me as genuine Postgres enthusiasts & great fun to geek out with. Neon (like Supabase) have been _really_ pushing the envelope on Postgres for the last couple of years, and have sponsored some significant developments & proposals. In my view they're a 'real OSS company'. While that probably does rose-tint my view of them a little, that's important to me & makes me happier to give them my money. They've certainly done more for Postgres than AWS ever has.

Thank you for the confidence and praise! I do believe we, Neon, try to be as open as possible while also trying to build a business around this open source product.

I'm a proud PostgreSQL contributor myself and value the work of my collegues highly. However, it should be said that AWS' RDS PostgreSQL offering in late '13 significantly helped increase PostgreSQL adoption, and the recent contributions by AWS' own PostgreSQL Contributors Team should not be discounted. IIUC, their Aurora PostgreSQL offering also was the inspiration for Neon as a product, so I don't think that your last jab to AWS was justified like that.

Thanks for that, I'll go do some reading.

I met with Heikki in Estonia for local Postgres user group meetup. That was when I first time heard about Neon. He is a true Postgres hacker and very cool guy to talk to


It's good to hear that our presence at conferences makes a difference.

(Neon Postgres engineer)

Neon is so unreliable that they removed the percentages from their status website. A truly bad thing for a data company to do.

(Neon DevRel)

Hey, we do want to add numbers back to that page. The issue was that the original numbers were inaccurate.

"The goal of this metric is to represent the health of a system. However, we found this binary “is there an incident or not” approach wasn’t accurate for describing our service. For example, in the past 30 days, 99.9% of projects hosted on Neon had an uptime better than 99.95%; however, the status page displayed 99.89% uptime."

(source: https://neon.tech/blog/multi-tenant-uptime)

That seems like an accurate number then?

How many times do you expect to slice it? "For 99% of days this year, 99% of our customers have experienced 99% reliability for 99% of their users, we're 99% sure"? (That's just the long way of saying 95%)

They were calculated incorrectly, actually. This is something we are actively working on. We hoped to have it back for GA, but it didn't make it.

(Neon engineer)

Edit: to be more specific, we will have a new calculations similar to how Snowflake does theirs.

I’m not sure that’s much better?

Wanted to let you know that I have edited my comment. Here is the Snowflake page for reference by the way: https://status.snowflake.com/.

Hope that helps!


When Neon goes down twitter lights up, we haven't had it for a long time now.

Internally we are measuring the number of projects under 5 min in the last 30 days and it's been lower double digits over 700K+ total databases under management.

A TON of effort is going there, twice a week standups, tightening our processes and quality across the board, a standing item in our monthly board meetings. While stability is black and white, what goes into delivering it is a long tail of small and large improvement and a major team effort.

We will also update the status page soon.

(Neon PM) saddened to read this if I can help with anything you can reach me directly mike@neon.tech

Hi Mike, I appreciate that, but I don't think I see myself using Neon anytime soon, if at all.

If you're interested, our team also takes negative feedback to create points of emphasis on where we can improve. But I understand that takes time out of your day.

Fwiw my experience has been the exact opposite. It is by far away, the best serverless database I’ve used.

I couldn't try it because it had no email sign-up. Which is kind of weird for something that offer a tech (hosting essentially) product.

(Neon PM) You can use email+password, GitHub, Google or Hasura credentials to sign up at https://console.neon.tech/signup

We have an email sign-up now.

it has an email sign-up

That was last year: https://community.neon.tech/t/signup-and-rust-support/955

Good that they added it now.

woof, that does not sound good. Can you say more about how you were connecting? What was slow / gitchy and laggy? Feel free to reach to over DM to me with your project details.

(neon empl)

> Feel free to reach to over DM to me with your project details.

I’m not the parent commenter but just giving you a heads up that your HN profile doesn’t list any socials so I don’t know if people will find how to DM you. Unless you guys have a public Discord or something and it’s implied that that is how people would be able to DM you.

TY, fixed. Neon does have a public Discord https://discord.gg/92vNTzKDGp

We were connecting over `pg` (NodeJS). The web dashboard was constantly logging me out and was overall a mess (although I'd imagine it might be a bit better now, given GA?). There's no DMs on HackerNews btw

node-postgres (pg, probably more specifically pg-pool) doesn't do too well with serverless, not handling TCP connections killed while in the pool (or something): https://github.com/brianc/node-postgres/issues/2112 (open since 2020)

A nice marketing opportunity for Neon/Supabase to get a fix officially released.

I made a note in our internal Neon slack. Thanks!

I've had nothing but good experiences with them.

Another satisfied Neon user here. We migrated our tooling, users and thousands of databases recently and it has just worked.

How recently? They had 12 significant outages in a 2.5 month period in Q4 2023. Maybe should have done your homework before switching. https://x.com/coreyward/status/1734647763151851878

Since January 1st this year. We considered other PaaS providers, but Neon offered the best integration with our existing tooling.

We have an SLA in place and haven’t had a single issue so far.

adding on, didn't they also hide the percentages from their status page because it was going down so much?

We did not hide it because it was going down. We hid it because it was an incorrect calculation. We are currently re-doing the our status page to look more like Snowflake's.

I don't have any proof, but you'll just have to trust me, which could be a tough ask. Neon really tries to be transparent in internal and external communication.

(Neon engineer)

We're self-hosting Neon with an internal Kubernetes operator (keep your eyes out for more info) and we're incredibly happy with Neon's technical solutions. I'm not sure we'd be able to build our company without it :o

What's your added value in comparison to using plain Postgres, for example with the CloudnativePG operator for k8s?

The by far biggest is being able to scale it on top of Ceph, while getting performance from NVMe disks on Pageservers. This enables us to increase efficiency (aka cut costs) by 90%+ in a multi-tenant environment. Of course we don't get the same out of the box experience as CNPG, but considering we have the engineering capacity to build those parts ourselves, it was a no-brainer!

Thanks for the explanation! This sounds like the right use case to use something more complex.

I’m always hesitant to add additional technology to the stack if it doesn’t provide a bullet proof benefit. A lot of use cases are perfectly fine with plain postgres, and I’m always fighting against polluting the stack with additional unneeded complexity.

Sounds like a good use case. Do you have any benchmarks or numbers which you could share regarding the performance of database? (especially disk writes and reads)

i'd love to learn more about what you're doing! if you haven't already, please send a message. definitely want to hear lessons learned with your k8s operator.

Are you writing your own control plane or using neon_local?

Would love to see this!

Are you able to handle branching as well?

Branching the whole database (data included) seems really great. Congrats!

It does seem a bit pricey though. For $69/month (Scale), I could rent a dedicated server with 8 dedicated CPUs, twice the RAM and 20x the storage (and that's physically attached NVMe in raid 1), and have money to spare: https://www.hetzner.com/dedicated-rootserver/matrix-ax/

$69/month is peanuts for anyone running something that hopes to make any amount of money. Developer and operational experience, uptime, etc. seem way more important. Just getting to skip dealing with all that nonsense and focus on whether your idea / startup has any value whatsoever seems far more important.

(Obviously if it's just like a hobby deal then run it on a cheap VPS).

Unless it's enough money to spare to pay someone to manage Postgres on the server and scale it up and down as needed, this isn't that useful a comparison.

As an avid self-hoster, by all means, self host Postgres! But self hosted Postgres is not the same product as managed Postgres.

(Neon DevRel)

By all means, self-host Neon and come talk about it in our Discord (https://neon.tech/discord)!

Cheeky jokes aside, you can definitely go down the hetzner/VPS route. Not everyone has the expertise or desire to spend time doing so, but if you do, then go for it I say. We have some nifty features that are non-trivial to recreate, but again, it depends on your needs.

> For $69/month (Scale)

this also doesn't cover 100% uptime, but only 300h, and you will pay extra for each extra hour.

The Scale plan includes enough hours to run 1 CPU and 4GB of memory for the month.

Agree, I looked at wrong plan, sorry for confusion.

All good! Each tier includes enough compute hours to run a database 24/7. Just with varying levels of CPU/RAM and storage.

I switched my company over to Neon from PlanetScale. In part for the ability to scale up/down easily and also so I could run multiple databases on the same cluster.

I also looked at (and spun up) RDS but Neon was way easier to work with and scales to 0 (Aurora Serverless is trash IMHO). Neon starts very quickly as well (hundreds of milliseconds in my testing) which is pretty awesome.

Switching over a company, and especially the database, to a beta product that was not public yet…that‘s brave.

Not OP, but I did the same.

I have nightly backups dumped to Cloudflare R2 from a GitHub action.

If Neon announces they're shutting down, migrating the database to another provider is a bash 1 liner and an hour of downtime.

If Neon just "goes dark" I can recover from the nightly backup and lose at most 24 hours of data - data that is denormalized into other systems and can be manually recovered if absolutely necessary (but probably not).

Not every company is the same, but for many use cases the database layer is an inconsequential decision as long as the API is fungible for your use case.

Not every decision is a 1-way door.

The most important way you can spend your time when making a 1-way door decision for a company isn't picking the right door. It's turning the decision into a 2-way door.

> The most important way you can spend your time…

I‘d argue that the most important way to spend the time is on building something customers want and not micro-optimize with shiny database vendor of the week. Get a boring managed Postgres and it‘ll scale for a very very long time, it‘s well understood and if you hit the limit, that‘s a good problem to have and there‘s many solutions for that when the time comes.

I don’t consider this a micro-optimization.

My customer profile at the time was mom-and-pop small businesses. Bespoke application development that automated back office work delivered on ~6week timeline.

The size of their tech department was 0.

The goal with the architecture I delivered was to delegate as much as possible below a vendor boundary.

My solution was: Cloudflare workers for compute. R2 for storage. Neon for database. HTML/JS/CSS for the frontend.

Neon wasn’t a micro-optimization. It was the only vendor in town that would own that much of the DB layer’s responsibility (D2 wasn’t prod ready yet).

12months in and so far so good. I’ve had to “come back in” for a total of 30minutes of maintenance when mobile Chrome broke uploading a photo via camera.

> The size of their tech department was 0.

Wouldn‘t you want the most boring solution that‘s unlikely to change in the next 5 years for this use case? (AWS etc.)

With a company that did a big funding round it‘s very likely that it gets acquired, shut-down, products get sunsetted, API endpoints need to be changed in the next years.

Can you please share your github action for backup on r2?

+1 on this

    #!/usr/bin/env bash
    OBJECT_NAME="pg_dump_$(date -u +"%Y-%m-%dT%H:%M:%SZ").dump.gz"
    pg_dump --dbname="${DB_CONNECTION}" | gzip > "${OBJECT_NAME}"
    rclone copy "./${OBJECT_NAME}" "cf:${CLOUDFLARE_NAMESPACE_ID}/db/"

That's fair. It was something I was worried about but I knew the worst-case was I could spin up RDS and move over to that. This is for my personal company and the load on the software is very spiky with long periods of near-zero activity (we did the switch over in one of those zero-activity periods). That gave us an easy on-ramp to testing this DB as a replacement.

There are some other options as well, like this one: https://www.pingcap.com/tidb-serverless/

Why switch away from PlanetScale though?

1 "Database" = 1 Server/Cluster

I have 1 database per client and their needs almost never overlap so I wanted to share the underlying server/cluster between them. You can't do that on PlanetScale. Aside from that I liked working them.

I am one of the super happy customer of neon. this definitely deserved an upvote on PH (https://www.producthunt.com/posts/neon-8)

I have been using it for more than a year now and I never had any kind of issues with it (except for the recent price change)

Either you don’t really rely on your DB or you don’t have monitoring in place. https://x.com/coreyward/status/1734647763151851878

The market timing of this ~1 day (same day?) after Supabase GA? Both are good platforms though.

This cannot be a coincidence

(Neon engineer) It is a coincidence :) I had to confirm internally too.

I’m not extremely well versed in the topic so forgive the ignorance: how does this differ from AWS Aurora’s offering? is pricing or scaling different. It’s not immediately obvious why you would want to use this instead.

(Neon ceo) 1. You should try and see the experience 2. It scales to 0. If you have lots of projects aurora costs really add up 3. It supports branches and integrates with vercel. You can have environment for every dev and every pr. 4. We will be on multiple clouds soon 5. We are just getting started

Hello, not parent

I wish you the best of luck, but please know that for a lot of us time is money and also literally our most invaluable / irreplaceable asset, and also tech startups who want us to make a bet on them need to have some sort of value proposition given the risk of "you might die or disapear or be aqui-hired in three months after we moved" so I would encourage to not answering this as your 1).

To me the instinctive reaction is "it's for when you will have time to fool around and figure it out by yourself". It is my opinion only, it's worth nothing more than that, and I realize you didn't ask for it, but I just wanted to let you know.

In the linked article it says:

"Unlike AWS Aurora we decided to open source all the changes in Postgres and also send them upstream as well as fully open source our cloud native storage."

Also, at the top right there's a link to the GitHub repo: https://github.com/neondatabase/neon

You can find replies from folks in this thread as well discussing self hosted deployments and you can find an entire discord channel dedicated to that topic here: https://discord.gg/92vNTzKDGp

I'm not associated with Neon and I've never used it before and I certainly don't disagree with your sentiment, but it seems like Neon has gone above and beyond in making sure that workloads could continue to run in the event the company fails and broadly assuaging those concerns.

The full control plane is not open source, so if you use tenants or many of the not-in-postgres features you will need to implement the control plane. It's not too much work to do so - there's already a few open source projects starting to do so - but just be aware of that.

We have a toy control plane implementation in the neon repo aliased to `cargo neon`, but also available as `neon_local`. I'm honestly not sure if open-sourcing the production control plane is in our future.

(Neon engineer)

(From molnett.com) For us that self-host, the architecture of building cold storage on top of Object Storage and warm storage on top of NVMEs is unbeatable. It enables us to build a much more cost-effecting offering while keeping Postgres as our database.

> Neon ceo) [...] It scales to 0.

> (Neon DevRel here) [...] However, many production databases won't scale to zero often.

I think a planned consistent message might be best


Neon won't pull the rug from under an active production database by scaling to 0 when there are still active queries, instead it'll scale databases to 0 only after a longer period of inactivity. So production databases are less likely to scale to 0 because they generally are active most of the time, yet Neon does scale to 0 when it's possible and allowed.

Is 5 a reference to how you naked the prices so Neon doesn’t work for light-workload, moderate storage databases anymore? $69+ a month for a Segment data warehouse holding 10gb is obnoxious. It was under $10 before the switch. What’s next? $690/mo?


> Bro, it's a managed Postgres instance

I could've sworn I closed my Reddit account. I thought neon was meant to be a bit like Git with data, with branches etc, as well as autoscaling and nice stuff like that.

Branching would be valuable

Why is storage priced so high? Depending on the plan it looks like it can cost anywhere from $1.50 to $1.75 per GB. That feels pretty excessive; maybe I’m missing something that causes it to be so pricy? It actively discourages me from wanting to use it for a hobby project, because the storage costs would send my bill to over $100/month before I even use any compute.

Storage costs are something we are going to be looking at soon. If we can reduce our cost of goods sold, it is possible to pass on savings to consumers.

You just 10x-ed the prices for storage a couple months ago.

The feature they call "branches" is more accurately to call "snapshots" or "checkpoints". Creating CoW writable versions and rolling back to past versions - that's snapshots. Branches imply merging, which is a huuuge can of worms, even if we apply last-write-wins, cause referential integrity and things, can't just merge postgreses.

Merging is a tricky one for operational databases. We think merging schemas is a useful feature. Merging data is likely not. The feature is coming!

I've been using Neon's serverless Postgres for the last 6 months and I'm extremely impressed! As a developer, it has been a game-changer in terms of productivity and letting me focus on building features rather than managing database infrastructure.

Congrats to the amazing Neon team on launching serverless Postgres to the world!

Thank you! Can you tell me more about the stack you're using? [pure curiosity]

(neon product)

Anyone using it in production?

The only issue I've found with Neon is that to use listen/notify the DB needs to be awake 24/7 which defeats the purpose of serverless.

(Neon DevRel here)

This is valid. However, many production databases won't scale to zero often. The serverless proposition is still valuable if you factor in the development, test, and staging environments scaling to zero plus our autoscaling that doesn't require downtime or dropped connections.

For guaranteed message delivery, you're probably best of using a messaging system designed with that in mind instead of listen/notify.

Is it possible to set the production database to have a minimum scale of 1? So even if it "should" scale to zero it won't?

Yes, you can set the min/max for scale. I scale down to “.25” as my min.

(Neon PM) This is true and very often production applications need access to their database 24/7, so they benefit from the serverless nature of autoscaling.

Congratulations! Nice job, Neon team. The most remarkable part of the service is the forking history in storage for a database. So fun.

(Neon ceo)

Our storage tech is amazing :)

And written in Rust for extra fun and profit

Is it a coincidence supabase went GA 2 hours before this? Not being snarky, genuinely curious.


To provide more context, our original plan was to launch the GA on March 22nd. However, we decided to move the date to April 15th because a few projects required additional time to complete. Last week we saw Supabase announcement but we didn't know what is that about and decided to not to move our date again.

Who is “we”? Who are you?

Your HN profile doesn’t tell.

(PG Hacker @ Neon)

Stas Kelvich one of my bosses, and one of the founders of Neon.

Yes :)

Storage is the most surprisingly expensive part now. $1.50/GB is kind of a tough pill to swallow. We've been exploring the idea of shifting from Aurora to Neon. With the recent pricing changes, our bill has exploded even with almost zero usage of compute time.

We are currently lumping storage retention history (we store all the history for a period of time so you can time travel) and backups together.

We are rethinking this, please stay tuned

Even if backups/history were taking up zero space, $1.50/GB seems really high for raw storage. The rest of the pricing seems reasonable to me. We're only around 100GB right now, but can see that ballooning up in the future and raising some concerns.

By the way, I do want to say that branching is a game changer. The recent usability improvements like graphs/metrics and being able to reset a branch to the state of another one without affecting the endpoint is so nice. We previously had a messy script that took care of creating a new branch, moving endpoints, renaming, deleting, etc.

More fine-grained permissions for users on projects would be my number one ask at this point, but overall, I really appreciate the improvements the Neon team has made in recent months.

Permissions improvements have been duly noted by others, so expect that work to begin sometime in the near future.

Reducing our COGS is very important, and also something that we will be working on. I would definitely reach out to our sales team for a more custom quote.

(Neon engineer)

I’m confused, are we talking about object storage here? Like $0.023/GB in S3 storage cost?

Neon keeps an NVME cache in the Pageservers, and it also keeps copies of the data in S3, one for the main storage, and one for the backup case. The data also gets stored on special replicated storage (Safekeepers). So it might be in 6 different places at the same time (3 safekeepers, 1 pageserver, 2 S3 buckets), details depending on the data's lifecycle through the system.

This architecture delivers really good safety: Once your transaction commits, the data is already replicated across different AZs, and this is done without there being an S3 request each time. It also means that Neon can deliver features like branching.

(Neon engineer)

> So it might be in 6 different places at the same time (3 safekeepers, 1 pageserver, 2 S3 buckets), details depending on the data's lifecycle through the system.

I hope it is encrypted on S3 at least? :)

Yes, it's encrypted at rest both on the NVME drives as well as on S3.


There is no system of per-project encryption keys though.

This almost feels like how cloud providers charge excessive fees for excess bandwidth. Storage is cheap, even with replication, especially at Neon scale.

(Neon PM). If you're willing to discuss your project's specifics, contact me directly mike@neon.tech as I'd love to chat.

Yeah, I am not sure what "scales to zero" really means. The storage costs + pre-paid compute could essentially buy you an AWS instance. Sure you do get things configured from the get-go but if you can get your way through Terraform that can work too.

Either way, if you get big enough (will use more storage + compute), it makes sense to move. I'd be against such platforms as they make changes to Postgres that might make you depend on them.

One case where scale to zero can help is if your main branch scales to zero, that means more compute hours for your non-main branches.

FWIW, Neon is really "just" Postgres. I can't think of anything Neon specific that would lock you in, other than that we don't support certain kinds of extensions yet. But if you were going to use those extensions, then you probably wouldn't have picked Neon in the first place. I also wouldn't consider that a lock-in. Do you have any examples that you might be aware of in Neon? Postgres compatibility is something that we take very seriously.

(Neon employee)

(neon product)

hey all, i've only been with neon for a very short time but i'm super excited to be here because i believe neon can deliver an amazing developer experience that databases have been lacking. while we are simply postgres on top the neon platform is something special that unlocks a lot of new possibilities.

this ga is simply marking readiness for the platform and the team that has been building it. there's a lot more to do going forward.

as we're looking forward, post-GA, i'd love to hear what you think neon needs to focus on next. here's what i'm seeing so far: - improved gh actions integration - more extensions - better developer extension support - autoscaling communications - metrics / logs integrations

what else?

Bryan has great ideas, so stay tuned for more product features soon.

(Neon engineer)

As far as I know Neon has no filesystem cache, which is the most important performance enhancer for Postgres. As here are many using Neon already in production: Does anyone can comment on the performance for large databases (a couple of tables with around 100 million rows) compared to RDS / Supabase / other hosted service? I can imagine that it is substantially slower. But would be happy to be surprised, if not. Or to learn how Neon compensates the missing filesystem cache.

Neon engineer here. We implemented our own local cache between the pageserver and Postgres (called LFC). It compensates for the lack of a normal file system cache, and scales up with the rest of the autoscaling infrastructure.

Cool tech aside, setting up a database in neon is just so easy. It's my default now - especially after releasing replication.

I want to use this as a chance to bring attention to a GitHub issue that I think would help reduce friction for Neon:


If the Neon driver were to allow us to easily pass in a localhost connection, the development and test experience would be easier. Perhaps Neon could swap to something like this internally: https://github.com/porsager/postgres.

Having run a local dev environment connected to Neon and tests connected to Neon got in our way of adoption. We'd prefer to develop and run tests against a regular Postgres localhost database.

To the PMs of Neon, put yourself in the shoes of a new developer thinking of giving Neon a try. What changes will I have to make to my code and my development workflow?

The technology is interesting but the billing doesn't convince me. I don't feel that I can scale storage easier with Neon than using just a bigger server with plain Postgresql.

Neon is more than just Postgres with a storage device. It's a managed service with features like branching, autoscaling, bottomless storage, etc.

People who really find Neon valuable usually partake in our "differentiating" features, so if all you need is a managed Postgres, there will definitely be more competitive prices out on the market.

I'm working with a client on a greenfield project and I picked postgres as the tech stack. For the staging server, I just locally installed postgres, configured it, and it works perfectly fine. On the flip side, I'd rather just focus on code, and if there's a free tier (which neon has), I'd rather shell that off to a service.

So, my question is, what trade offs am I making other than a persistant/local db to off-site (ie probably a degree of speed). Since it's free, does that mean my data might be inspected? I'm under an NDA, and my client would prefer his data stays in-house unless there's a good reason for it not to be.

The free tier gets spun down to idle after five minutes of inactivity. The first request after that usually fails to connect as it takes a few seconds for it to come back up.

Neon cold starts are targeted at just a few hundred milliseconds. Anything on the order of seconds would be a regression in our minds. Obviously this depends on geographical latencies, etc. We are always looking to improve cold starts.

(Neon engineer)

Hmm maybe my application's db pool settings need to be tweaked then. In any case the UX is nice and setup was super easy, thanks!

If you're a paying customer, please reach out to support. If you're on the free tier, join the discord, and we can try and help too.

I'm on the free tier. In my case it looks like adding `app.config["SQLALCHEMY_ENGINE_OPTIONS"] = {"pool_pre_ping": True}` for the Flask-SQLAlchemy configuration did the trick. I hope to be a paying customer soon :)

We do not inspect user data. We don't even connect to user databases, unless given permission to. You can read our privacy policy here: https://neon.tech/privacy-policy.

Neon will never be as fast as a database local on your computer, but performance is always something we are paying attention to.

If you’re aiming for EU compliance you’re going to need to host the data within the EU and only have EU staff have any sort of access, like running support on it. Microsoft is exempt from that last bit for some reason, but they are Microsoft so they probably cheat.

Won’t be a lot of EU enterprise that will be capable of using your services without rather strict compliance. Which may or may not be in your interest but you might as well just be up front about it. With the way EU is heading in regards to data protection it may not just be enterprise organisations either by 2025. Those compliance laws are getting stricter and stricter by the day.

We support EU regions. Our sales team is happy to talk more about our data compliance.

Nice work Neon! I’ve used it a number of times and am impressed at how quickly databases become available. Leaps and bounds faster than RDS. it’s amazing when you need something now.

Neon seems really great to me, but I wish I could easily run it locally via Kubernetes. I know there are some projects out there[0] but they are all supported by 3rd parties and things like branching and other features don't appear to be supported.

I'd love to be able to just use a helm chart to have Neon in my homelab.

[0] https://github.com/itsbalamurali/neon-operator

> Postgres continues to hold its position as one of the most popular developer databases ever created.

Not bashing Postgres, however that statement is an overstatement. Postgres was a "it exists" database back in the early 2000's.

All the scripts my scripts kiddie paws could get on were always orientated towards MySQL.

Uploading .php3 files on 56k were my teenagers eyes of fun.

Disclaimer work at AWS.

> Postgres was a "it exists" database back in the early 2000's.

If we're really nitpicking it's not saying Postgres is the most popular database since the early 2000's. If you base it of off install counts as the metric, I would assume the statement is true since I'd think it's either Postgres or MySQL today.

I'm glad that Postgres is now a thing and is now being offered in comparison to MySQL. The stack of LAMP in 05's is what kept it down below.

LAPP wasn't a thing, which is now. And Apache is falling behind thanks to nginx.

It wasn't until JSON and Postgres supporting JSON that made developers change their cog. 2012, and I'd agree.



I think the real turning point was the introduction of Postgres extension in 9.1 (2011).

Have you considered publishing pricing for larger databases? It would be interesting to know whether the offering would be useful at sizes not covered by the listed tiers.

edit: given the headline feature of infinite PITR capability, knowing the price tag could be quite important. Especially if purging old data isn’t supported (is it?)

Our Sales team is more than happy to communicate about custom deals. I don't know if our team has given thought about more plans on the web page. I would think we want to keep the number of plans small to give users an easier time parsing the page. I think competitors typically have similar number of plans, but I haven't checked in a while.

Aha, I see the $15 per 10 GiB/mo extra in the little info box. That’s … steep, especially for cold data.

I have an application on MySQL that I’d love to move to a service like Neon. Maybe I’ll port it to Postgres some day. But not at those storage prices, at least not without serious care.

I doubt I’ll ever use Neon again after they had our production database go down several times over just a couple of months Q4 last year. We got tired of the downtime during an incident and we were able to spin up a Supabase PG instance and switch over to it faster than Neon could resolve the incident. It wound up taking them days to resolve it fully. They then increased the prices significantly about a month later. Given that it’s only been four months since these issues, I don’t think that they are serious people in the slightest and don’t trust them with a production database.

(Neon CEO) I'm sorry you had this experience. We had several instabilities in Q4 as the system became popular. That was the one of the reasons we called it "preview" until we got stability to where it needs to be. We are also very transparent about every outage - see neonstatus.com and highlight even the smallest ones.

We are also iterating over prices - we were purely consumption before and realized that we need to offer $19 pain plan to start based on the value our customers get. This is in line for what other devplatform charge for using their services.

Reading the pitch and this solves all of the problems I don't have (as a developer and operator of services that don't need to scale to millions of users). How often do you need to clone/restore whole databases, really? But I may be misunderstanding the pitch.

(Neon PM) instant branching in a development workflow because it's like git but for your database. You can develop or test against an exact copy of production without the risks of testing on production. Autoscaling is useful if the load on your datbase varies (you can save money, even if your app isn't serving millions of users).

Until you start firing emails and texts to your production customers :-)

That aside, I think Neon is pretty cool. I will wait some time to see how stable a service it is, whether price hikes happen often, or whether VC money destroys it.

I think Autora for me is too pricey, but I settled for self hosting PG on Hetzner. I'm there bc Hetzner has been stable for me for years. What I fear the most is having to migrate a db off of some service bc I stopped being their target audience. I know this sucks for startups trying to make it but a risk is a risk. I'll wait and see.

This is very cool for troubleshooting in production. Testing/developing against a production copy is a no-no, if I'm hosting my customer's data.

I tried Neon for our startup but ended up going with Planetscale. The stability guarantees seemed weak and still scare me. I would be happy to take another look, but I've had no problems with Vitess, it has been a dream. congrats on your guys' launch to GA.

I don't really see a reason to move off of Planetscale, which is a very mature offering, if it works for you. There is always a cost when moving Postgres providers, doubly so, when you're moving from MySQL to Postgres.

I think the Postgres ecosystem has many differentiating factors where MySQL and MariaDB just can't compete.

(Neon engineer)

That pricing is quite "less generous" than Turso: https://turso.tech/pricing

I'm wondering what accounts for the difference; is Turso just bleeding money on smaller tiers, etc?

The founder of Turso explained how they can have such a generous free tier in a tweet:

> Lots of people have been reaching out to me asking if they should expect our free tier to be around, given recent news.

> Yes, you can expect our free tier to be around.

> The main reason we built a service on SQLite is that we knew we could build the most efficient thing in the market with that. I usually keep these number semi private, but last month Turso had over 20,000 databases under management - in all plans - and our Cloud bill was less then 3.5K USD.

> I sympathize with Planetscale, in the sense that running a company is hard and you sometimes have to make hard choices. But look beyond words, into cost structures and incentives:

> Of course our service is expensive to operate, like any service, but most of it is staffing. We'll never find ourselves in a situation where killing our free tier will make any dent in the profitability of the company.


Turso is sqlite not postgresql

as a "mere user" of the JS or API endpoints, should I think one is better than the other? To me it doesn't really matter if it's Supabase/Neon, Turso, or D1 powering it as long as... it works

Is this faster / more resilient?

With Turso you get an sqlite database behind a SDK or an (HTTP REST) API endpoint.

With Neon you get a postgresql database over a postgres wire format connection.

So if you have an already existing app speaking postgres to a database somewhere, Neon is a drop-in-replacement, while Turso would require adapting to their custom API.

If you are creating a new service, you might need/want to take advantage of e.g postgres extensions [0] for storing geographical data or pg_vector for similarity searches etc. Or you simply need more stringent serialisability promises than what libsql / turso can provide.

But if you just writing something new from scratch and have "simple" demands, I think something like Turso looks cool (and cheap!).

[0]: https://neon.tech/docs/extensions/pg-extensions

I'd probably care because of the ecosystem. There's a bunch of developer tooling and mature ORMs around postgres. Granted, those same libraries/frameworks probably work with sqlite too.

I guess it's just trust. I trust postgres more than I trust sqlite for building big apps.

One last point: I'd look at feature set of both offerings. I suspect the features of the postgres offering to be more conducive to scale.

They both could be faster or more resilient depending on your workload and what you want that to mean.

Take some time to learn about the differences between postgres and sqlite it is good to know about the trade offs.

I have been using Neon for some time now, and have quite liked it.

I don't get how this achieves point in time recovery? I assume I'm misunderstanding some fundamental part here.

If the branches are achieved using a COW file system, how does this part from the blog post work?

> Suppose a developer fat fingers a table or a database out of existence? No problem, move the branch to the second before that event happened.

How can I go back in time arbitrarily here? I would have assumed that you can only go to existing snapshots if the underlying method is a COW file system.

This is achieved through our Pageserver. The pageserver ingests streams of WAL, and so contains both snapshots and deltas. This lets us efficiently seek to any LSN by replaying page deltas on top of the nearest snapshot (we call it the GetPage@LSN API).

This blog post has a lot more details: https://neon.tech/blog/get-page-at-lsn

(Postgres hacker @ Neon)

PostgreSQL writes changes to disk using WAL for consistency. Every WAL record is a set of changes to the PostgreSQL data directory (data files, metadata, ...) that need to be persisted together.

Neon indexes this WAL, and restores pages to the right version by replaying all WAL from the previous page snapshot up to the right version, allowing full point-in-time for all persistent tables in the database.

Calling it "branches" does seem misleading. For instance, would this also work across major PG versions? afaict, it is just not possible to merge two differently versioned postgres-es

> Calling it "branches" does seem misleading.

Branching in Neon should be interpreted more like the branches seen in graph theory's trees rather than the featureset exposed by git: the whole history of a Neon project is a unidirected graph with a single path between any two points in the history.

> For instance, would this also work across major PG versions

As for multiple major versions: We currently can handle multiple major versions in different tenants on the same pageserver/safekeeper servers, just not for the user's PostgreSQL instance. Major version upgrades (by way of pg_upgrade) are something we're working on, but that's still quite far down the road.

> afaict, it is just not possible to merge two differently versioned postgres-es

Correct, and AFAIK we don't actually advertise anything related to merging histories. If we do, please do tell where, so we can correct that.

We use NeonDB in production and I the use of the term "branching" intuitive.

We can branch off the main database to test things out, and periodically reset the branch to its parent.

There are some points where the analogy doesn't quite work, but what should they call it instead?

Here is an article about PITR in Neon https://neon.tech/blog/point-in-time-recovery-in-postgres

Is it possible to self host neon? any docs related to that?

We have a few people self-hosting Neon in this thread who are in our Discord's selfhost channel. Might try jumping in. We don't have too many docs related to self hosting at the moment.

I'm an engineer at Neon, happy to answer any questions

I would appreciate some details on the implementation of isolation for multi-tenancy. Are the worker nodes shared?

Sure! Each instance of Postgres runs inside a qemu VM, inside a kubernetes pod. The VM provides isolation, autoscaling, metrics, and (eventually) live migrations. These VMs share AWS Metal nodes.

Source code here: https://github.com/neondatabase/autoscaling

Same here!

It looks like the compute for the free tier is free (for your main branch) + 20h for branches, but the lowest paid tier is 300h for all branches. Can anyone using this speak to that? I've seen this trend where free tier has better features than the lowest paid tier.

Edit: Love to see several Neon folks in this thread from various parts of the company. It's always good to get insight from engineering, devrel, product, and CEO.

(Neon PM) If your project uses less than 500 MiB storage, our Free plan might be the best plan for you. If your project needs more storage, branches or larger compute then a paid plan might be a better fit: with Launch you can run your project 24/7 at $19/month.

Thanks! So that 300h of compute is for other branches? Still 24/7 for primary compute on Launch?

The Launch plan includes 300 compute hours. All your computes draw from this, regardless of whether or not it's a primary branch.

For a simple comparison, let's assume you only use 0.25 vCPU computes and your primary compute runs 24/7 (~750 hours per month) to keep the comparison easy:

1. On the Free plan, you can have the primary running 24/7 plus an additional 20 hours for other branches.

2. On the Launch plan, you can have the primary running 24/7 plus an additional 450 hours for other branches. And of course the 10 GiB storage + other paid features.

Full details at https://neon.tech/docs/introduction/plans

Congrats to Neon on the generally available status. Big vote of confidence. I've looked around and Neon is the only serverless Postgres I’ve seen that provides copy-on-write branching. Every other managed service has some significant seeding limitation when one looks at the details.

Neat idea, but the stability and assurance of RDS is pretty compelling and migrating databases is pretty much the worst in my experience, even big services like Azure can have unexpected database issues that burn time and money.

Also, custom postgres implementations are a bit scary from a performance tuning perspective.

If you have an application that runs 24*7, how do you determine what your costs will be?

(Neon PM) Do you have have an idea of the RAM or compute your application needs Many applications can run 24/7 with 1 GiB RAM on the Launch plan at $19/month.

(Neon ceo)

They never exceed the limit you set in the number of cpus.

In practice the cost a lot less than max number of cpus * time. Think about area under the curve of cpu(t).

Appreciate yall being active in here but this doesn't really answer the question. Neon looks really interesting to us, we're currently paying Heroku for a standard-5 postgres plan at $1400/month. But that's mostly for the 1 TB of storage, I have no idea how much "compute" we currently use.

You will likely save money on Neon. Please reach out to our team (contact sales, support or discord) and we will give you an estimate

Our Sales team would be happy to talk through pricing with you. Do you have any suggestions on where we could clearer to people like yourself who are in the same position?

Storage costs can be calculated as something along the lines of:

    size of current database * retention period (configurable) + compute hours
(Neon engineer)

Will there be any effort to support self hosting open source (releases, docs, support?), instead of just "source code available"?

Please join our discord a number of people are doing that and the community is helping out.

I find it really sad how many communities these days use Discord rather than a searchable forum. There's no specific Q&A format to hone in on specific solutions.

Especially now that Discord will be displaying ads.

(Neon Engineer)

The name Neon is very confusing as KDE uses that name for it's Linux Distribution and has for quite some time (at least 2017).

This looks awesome (wish I had these features for MySQL on my current project...)

Are there any resources for IaC, e.g. terraform provider etc?

Do I still need to worry about vacuum and bloat or does Neon intelligently handle these?

Is this actually Postgres, or is it some other database that aims to be compatible with the PG wire protocol?

Our fork of Postgres is located at https://github.com/neondatabase/postgres.

It’s Postgres.

What's a serverless postgres?

Does it mean a postgres server hosted by Neon and you basically pay them for administration?

Neon is a managed serverless Postgres offering.

"Managed" means we take care of Postgres administration.

"Serverless" means that your database isn't running if you're not using it. We put computes to sleep after a certain amount of time. We can also scale database resources up and down as needed.

(Neon engineer)

I think it usually means that it's fully queryable by serverless functions, usually via atomic HTTP API calls, and often without network restrictions.

But in this case it seems to be referring to the database itself, and the ability to scale to and from zero resources on demand.

Congrats, Neon!

Congrats! It has been quite the journey!

Given this is serverless - can this scale indefinitely? Asking both in terms of storage and compute.

There are some limits. Architecture wise storage indefinitely and compute up to the largest bare metal node on Amazon plus as many read replicas as you want.

How can you have an SQL database without a server? Do they just mean container-on-demand?

We spawn a Postgres instance on the fly if it isn't already up in just a few hundred milliseconds. Cold start times are always something we try to improve.

(Neon engineer)

A process? Or like a container with Postgres in it?

It is a VM which is hosted in a Kubernetes pod.

We just run everything on a small cheap Threadripper with a mere 1/2TB RAM, it just sits in the co-founder's basement.

Congrats on reaching GA!

I have used Cloudflare D1 before - how does Neon compare to D1?

Is D1 Postgres?

D1 is sqlite but it's serverless, so the two are comparable on that basis

good point - yeah D1 i think is sqlite based. for my toy projects that hasnt mattered so far but for more complex projects i see how this is a big difference, thanks for pointing out!

Personally I find D1 to be fantastic (and comparable, in this case), but that's just me

Does it support extensions like PostGIS?

Yes! We support a lot of extensions, including PostGIS. Full list here: https://neon.tech/docs/extensions/pg-extensions

How it compares against supabase?

How many of these comments are sock puppets?


ad on hackernews?

Everyone shows off their cool work on Hckrnews

Yea it’s generally available

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