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A PostgreSQL Interface for Snowflake Data

Use the Remoting features of the Snowflake JDBC Driver to create a PostgreSQL entry-point for data access.

There are a vast number of PostgreSQL clients available on the Internet. From standard Drivers to BI and Analytics tools, PostgreSQL is a popular interface for data access. Using our JDBC Drivers, you can now create PostgreSQL entry-points that you can connect to from any standard client.

To access Snowflake data as a PostgreSQL database, use the CData JDBC Driver for Snowflake and a JDBC foreign data wrapper (FDW). In this article, we compile the FDW, install it, and query Snowflake data from PostgreSQL Server.

Connect to Snowflake Data as a JDBC Data Source

To connect to Snowflake as a JDBC data source, you will need the following:

  • Driver JAR path: The JAR is located in the lib subfolder of the installation directory.
  • Driver class: cdata.jdbc.snowflake.SnowflakeDriver

  • JDBC URL: The URL must start with "jdbc:snowflake:" and can include any of the connection properties in name-value pairs separated with semicolons.

    To connect to Snowflake:

    1. Set User and Password to your Snowflake credentials and set the AuthScheme property to PASSWORD or OKTA.
    2. Set URL to the URL of the Snowflake instance (i.e.: https://myaccount.snowflakecomputing.com).
    3. Set Warehouse to the Snowflake warehouse.
    4. (Optional) Set Account to your Snowflake account if your URL does not conform to the format above.
    5. (Optional) Set Database and Schema to restrict the tables and views exposed.

    See the Getting Started guide in the CData driver documentation for more information.

    Built-in Connection String Designer

    For assistance in constructing the JDBC URL, use the connection string designer built into the Snowflake JDBC Driver. Either double-click the JAR file or execute the jar file from the command-line.

    java -jar cdata.jdbc.snowflake.jar

    Fill in the connection properties and copy the connection string to the clipboard.

    A typical JDBC URL is below:

    jdbc:snowflake:User=Admin;Password=test123;Server=localhost;Database=Northwind;Warehouse=TestWarehouse;Account=Tester1;

Build the JDBC Foreign Data Wrapper

The Foreign Data Wrapper can be installed as an extension to PostgreSQL, without recompiling PostgreSQL. The jdbc2_fdw extension is used as an example.

  1. Add a symlink from the shared object for your version of the JRE to /usr/lib/libjvm.so. For example: ln -s /usr/lib/jvm/java-6-openjdk/jre/lib/amd64/server/libjvm.so /usr/lib/libjvm.so
  2. Start the build: make install USE_PGXS=1

Query Snowflake Data as a PostgreSQL Database

After you have installed the extension, follow the steps below to start executing queries to Snowflake data:

  1. Log into your database.
  2. Load the extension for the database: CREATE EXTENSION jdbc2_fdw;
  3. Create a server object for Snowflake: CREATE SERVER Snowflake FOREIGN DATA WRAPPER jdbc2_fdw OPTIONS ( drivername 'cdata.jdbc.snowflake.SnowflakeDriver', url 'jdbc:snowflake:User=Admin;Password=test123;Server=localhost;Database=Northwind;Warehouse=TestWarehouse;Account=Tester1;', querytimeout '15', jarfile '/home/MyUser/CData/CData\ JDBC\ Driver\ for\ Salesforce MyDriverEdition/lib/cdata.jdbc.snowflake.jar');
  4. Create a user mapping for the username and password of a user known to the MySQL daemon. CREATE USER MAPPING for postgres SERVER Snowflake OPTIONS ( username 'admin', password 'test');
  5. Create a foreign table in your local database: postgres=# CREATE FOREIGN TABLE products ( products_id text, products_Id text, products_ProductName numeric) SERVER Snowflake OPTIONS ( table_name 'products');
You can now execute read/write commands to Snowflake: postgres=# SELECT * FROM products;