AWS, Cloud Computing

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A Guide to Upgrade Amazon RDS PostgreSQL 12 Engine Aurora to Aurora Serverless v2 (Part 1)

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In the fast-evolving landscape of cloud computing, Amazon Web Services (AWS) continues to provide innovative solutions to meet the dynamic needs of businesses. One such advancement is transitioning from traditional Amazon RDS PostgreSQL 12 Engine Aurora to the next-generation Aurora Serverless v2. This upgrade brings enhanced scalability and flexibility and optimizes cost management.

Amazon Aurora and Amazon Aurora Serverless v2

Amazon Aurora is a relational database service compatible with MySQL and PostgreSQL, provided by Amazon Web Services (AWS). It marries the performance and availability of premium commercial databases with the simplicity and cost-effectiveness of open-source databases. As a fully managed database solution, it has gained significant popularity among companies prioritizing speed and scalability.

In contrast, Aurora Serverless v2 represents an on-demand autoscaling configuration for Amazon Aurora. This setup automates workload monitoring and capacity adjustments for your databases, with capacity adapting dynamically to application demand. Charges are incurred only for the resources consumed by your DB clusters, offering a cost-efficient approach that aligns with your budget. Aurora Serverless v2 emerges as a solution that optimizes performance and ensures economical resource usage.

Amazon Aurora, known for its high performance and scalability, has reached new heights with the introduction of Aurora Serverless v2. This guide outlines the steps needed to upgrade from RDS PostgreSQL 12 Engine Aurora to Aurora Serverless v2, providing comprehensive insights at each phase of the transition process.

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Why Upgrading to Aurora Serverless v2?

  • Granularity: It provides enhanced granularity by allowing scaling down to 0.5, a more precise level compared to the 1 or 2 options in v1.
  • Failover and Read Replicas: It maintains the same failover capabilities as provisioned clusters with multi-AZ support and introduces the ability to create an Aurora Global database, features unavailable in Aurora Serverless V1.
  • Feature Parity: It exhibits a higher degree of feature parity with provisioned Aurora when compared to v1.
  • Cost-Effective: Aurora Serverless v2 can save up to 90% of your database costs compared to provisioning capacity for peak loads.
  • Highly Scalable: It exhibits rapid scalability, instantly handling hundreds of thousands of transactions in a fraction of a second.
  • Highly Available: It powers your business-critical workloads with the full breadth of Aurora features, including cloning, global database, Multi-AZ, and read replicas.
  • Simple: It removes the complexity of provisioning and managing database capacity.
  • Transparent: It scales database capacity instantly without disrupting incoming application requests.
  • Durable: It protects against data loss using the distributed, fault-tolerant, self-healing Aurora storage, making your data durable across three Availability Zones (AZs) in a Region.

Steps to Upgrade

  1. Assessment and Planning

Before starting the upgrade process, assess your current database workload and requirements. Consider factors such as performance expectations, peak usage times, and budget constraints.

  1. Backup Your Database

Create a backup of your existing RDS PostgreSQL 12 Engine Aurora database. This ensures a point-in-time restore option if anything goes wrong during the upgrade.

  1. Modify Parameter Groups

Review and modify parameter groups to align with Aurora Serverless v2 requirements. Pay attention to capacity setting parameters, as Aurora Serverless v2 relies on automatic scaling.

  1. Perform the Upgrade

Initiate the upgrade process by modifying your existing Aurora cluster to Aurora Serverless v2. AWS offers a simple procedure via the AWS Management Console or the AWS Command Line Interface (CLI).

  1. Testing and Validation

After the upgrade, thoroughly test your application to ensure compatibility with the new environment. Monitor performance metrics and validate that automatic scaling works as expected.

  1. Optimize for Cost and Performance

Fine-tune your Aurora Serverless v2 configuration based on actual usage patterns. Adjust the minimum and maximum capacity settings to optimize cost and performance.

  1. Monitor and Maintain

Implement ongoing monitoring to track the performance and health of your Aurora Serverless v2 instance. AWS provides various monitoring tools to help you stay informed about the state of your database.


Upgrading from Amazon RDS PostgreSQL 12 Engine Aurora to Aurora Serverless v2 is a strategic move to enhance scalability, performance, and cost efficiency. Following this comprehensive guide will prepare you for a successful migration. Remember to test thoroughly, continuously monitor, and optimize for your specific workload to maximize Aurora Serverless v2’s capabilities.

Drop a query if you have any questions regarding Amazon RDS PostgreSQL and we will get back to you quickly.

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1. What are the key benefits of upgrading to Aurora Serverless v2?

ANS: – Aurora Serverless v2 offers automatic scaling, pause and resume capabilities, and improved multi-AZ support for enhanced performance and reliability.

2. How do I upgrade from Amazon RDS PostgreSQL 12 Engine Aurora to Aurora Serverless v2?

ANS: – You can commence the upgrade process via the AWS Management Console or the AWS Command Line Interface (CLI).

WRITTEN BY Navneet Nirmal Toppo

Navneet is a Research Associate at CloudThat. He is a Microsoft Certified Solution Professional and a Certified Network Security Specialist and who has experience in AWS, Azure, GCP & vSphere. He is passionate about cloud computing, cybersecurity, and learning new cloud-native technologies who strives to provide the best cloud experience to clients through transparency.



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