Installing TimescaleDB on mac is easy. Simply install Timescale via Homebrew and you're all set up.
Except you're not. If you need multiple local Timescale versions or you already have installed Postgres before, you're out of luck.
There's an easier way to set up PostgreSQL with Timescale on Mac and to manage multiple versions: by using Docker.
In this article, we'll set up Timescale with Postgres 12 on macOS Big Sur with Docker.
# create folder for docker volume mkdir -p $HOME/docker/volumes/timescale-pg-12 # create and start timescale postgres 12 docker container docker run --rm --name timescale-pg-12 -p 127.0.0.1:5112:5432 -v $HOME/docker/volumes/timescale-pg-12:/var/lib/postgresql/data -e POSTGRES_PASSWORD=postgres -d timescale/timescaledb:latest-pg12 # connect psql -h localhost -p 5112 -U postgres # stop docker stop timescale-pg-12
Before we get to TimescaleDB, we need two things installed before we start.
First, we need to install Docker on macOS. Follow the instructions on docker.com to install the official Docker for Mac.
Also, start the Docker application and go through their Getting Started guide to make sure everything works.
You may need to restart your shell for the
docker cli command to work.
If you haven't already, install the Brew package manager.
Then, update Brew and install libpq:
brew update brew install libpq
As a last step, symlink
psql and the other libpq tools to your local binaries (
brew link --force libpq
Now we can install Timescale with PostgreSQL 12.
We'll start by creating a folder for our persistent Docker volume:
mkdir -p $HOME/docker/volumes/timescale-pg-12
Next, we'll create and start a Docker container with Postgres 13:
docker run --rm --name timescale-pg-12 -p 127.0.0.1:5112:5432 -v $HOME/docker/volumes/timescale-pg-12:/var/lib/postgresql/data -e POSTGRES_PASSWORD=postgres -d timescale/timescaledb:latest-pg12
TODO from here. Command works!
Let's unpack this command:
docker runis the command to start a container (and download it if it isn't cached locally)
--rmmakes Docker delete this container when it is stopped
--name timescale-pg-12gives the container its name
-p 127.0.0.1:5112:5432exposes port
5432(Postgres standard port) from the container to our local interface (
127.0.0.1) on port 5112
-v $HOME/docker/volumes/timescale-pg-12:/var/lib/postgresql/datamounts the data directory we created earlier into the correct place inside the Timescale Docker container
-e POSTGRES_PASSWORD=postgressets the connection password for the
-dmakes the container run in detached mode (in the background)
timescale/timescaledb:latest-pg12describes the Docker image we want to use
I like port 5112 because this makes it easy to distinguish different Postgres versions. 5113 for Timescale with PG 13, 5112 for Timescale with PG 12 and so on. This allows us to also use other ports for Postgres versions without Timescale, like port 5012 for Postgres 12.
And because we exposed to the local
127.0.0.1 interface only, nobody can connect to this Postgres instance from outside our own Mac.
We can now connect to the container with the following
psql -h localhost -p 5112 -U postgres
Just type in the password
postgres when required.
The connection string for this Postgres instance is
Don't worry If you get an error like the following, that means Postgres is setting itself up for the first time. This may take a minute or two:
➜ ~ psql -h localhost -p 5112 -U postgres psql: error: server closed the connection unexpectedly This probably means the server terminated abnormally before or while processing the request.
This works fabulously with other timescale / postgres versions, too! Here's an example for timescale on postgres 11:
mkdir -p $HOME/docker/volumes/timescale-pg-11 docker run --rm --name timescale-pg-11 -p 127.0.0.1:5111:5432 -v $HOME/docker/volumes/timescale-pg-11:/var/lib/postgresql/data -e POSTGRES_PASSWORD=postgres -d timescale/timescaledb:latest-pg11 psql -h localhost -p 5111 -U postgres docker stop timescale-pg-11