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Upstream and Downstream Clusters Data Validation and Snapshot Read

When you use TiCDC to build upstream and downstream clusters of TiDB, you might need to perform consistent snapshot read or data consistency validation on the upstream and downstream without stopping the replication. In the regular replication mode, TiCDC only guarantees that the data is eventually consistent, but cannot guarantee that the data is consistent during the replication process. Therefore, it is difficult to perform consistent read of dynamically changing data. To meet such a need, TiCDC provides the Syncpoint feature.

Syncpoint uses the snapshot feature provided by TiDB and enables TiCDC to maintain a ts-map that has consistency between upstream and downstream snapshots during the replication process. In this way, the issue of verifying the consistency of dynamic data is converted to the issue of verifying the consistency of static snapshot data, which achieves the effect of nearly real-time verification.

Enable Syncpoint

After enabling the Syncpoint feature, you can use Consistent snapshot read and Data consistency validation.

To enable the Syncpoint feature, set the value of the TiCDC configuration item enable-sync-point to true when creating a replication task. After enabling Syncpoint, TiCDC writes the following information to the downstream TiDB cluster:

  1. During the replication, TiCDC periodically (configured by sync-point-interval) aligns snapshots between the upstream and downstream and saves the upstream and downstream TSO correspondences in the downstream tidb_cdc.syncpoint_v1 table.
  2. During the replication, TiCDC also periodically (configured by sync-point-interval) executes SET GLOBAL tidb_external_ts = @@tidb_current_ts, which sets a consistent snapshot point that has been replicated in backup clusters.

The following TiCDC configuration example enables Syncpoint when creating a replication task:

# Enables SyncPoint. enable-sync-point = true # Aligns the upstream and downstream snapshots every 5 minutes sync-point-interval = "5m" # Cleans up the ts-map data in the downstream tidb_cdc.syncpoint_v1 table every hour sync-point-retention = "1h"

Consistent snapshot read

When you need to query the data from the backup cluster, you can set SET GLOBAL|SESSION tidb_enable_external_ts_read = ON; for the application to obtain transactionally consistent data on the backup cluster.

In addition, you can also select a previous point in time for snapshot read by querying ts-map.

Data consistency validation

To validate the data of upstream and downstream clusters, you only need to configure snapshot in sync-diff-inspector.

Step 1: obtain ts-map

You can execute the following SQL statement in the downstream TiDB cluster to obtain the upstream TSO (primary_ts) and downstream TSO (secondary_ts):

select * from tidb_cdc.syncpoint_v1; +------------------+----------------+--------------------+--------------------+---------------------+ | ticdc_cluster_id | changefeed | primary_ts | secondary_ts | created_at | +------------------+----------------+--------------------+--------------------+---------------------+ | default | test-2 | 435953225454059520 | 435953235516456963 | 2022-09-13 08:40:15 | +------------------+----------------+--------------------+--------------------+---------------------+

The fields in the preceding syncpoint_v1 table are described as follows:

  • ticdc_cluster_id: The ID of the TiCDC cluster in this record.
  • changefeed: The ID of the changefeed in this record. Because different TiCDC clusters might have changefeeds with the same name, you need to confirm the ts-map inserted by a changefeed with the TiCDC cluster ID and changefeed ID.
  • primary_ts: The timestamp of the upstream database snapshot.
  • secondary_ts: The timestamp of the downstream database snapshot.
  • created_at: The time when this record is inserted.

Step 2: configure snapshot

Then configure the snapshot information of the upstream and downstream databases by using the ts-map information obtained in Step 1.

Here is a configuration example of the Datasource config section:

######################### Datasource config ######################## [data-sources.uptidb] host = "" port = 4000 user = "root" password = "" snapshot = "435953225454059520" [data-sources.downtidb] host = "" port = 4000 user = "root" snapshot = "435953235516456963"


  • Before TiCDC creates a changefeed, make sure that the value of the TiCDC configuration item enable-sync-point is set to true. Only in this way, Syncpoint is enabled and the ts-map is saved in the downstream. For the complete configuration, see TiCDC task configuration file.
  • When you perform data validation using Syncpoint, you need to modify the Garbage Collection (GC) time of TiKV to ensure that the historical data corresponding to snapshot is not collected by GC during the data check. It is recommended that you modify the GC time to 1 hour and recover the setting after the check.
  • The above example only shows the section of Datasource config. For complete configuration, refer to sync-diff-inspector User Guide.
  • Since v6.4.0, only the changefeed with the SYSTEM_VARIABLES_ADMIN or SUPER privilege can use the TiCDC Syncpoint feature.
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