Introduction to PostgreSQL

PostgreSQL is an advanced object-relational database management system (ORDBMS), derived from the Berkeley Postgres database management system.

This package is known to build and work properly using an LFS-8.3 platform.

Package Information

PostgreSQL Dependencies


Python-2.7.15, Tcl-8.6.8, libxml2-2.9.8, libxslt-1.1.32, OpenLDAP-2.4.46, Linux-PAM-1.3.0, MIT Kerberos V5-1.16.1 and Bonjour

Optional (To Regenerate Documentation)

docbook-4.5, docbook-dsssl-1.79, OpenJade-1.3.2, and SGMLSpm-1.1

User Notes:

Installation of PostgreSQL

For enhanced security, it is better to have a dedicated group and user for running the PostgreSQL server. First, issue as the root user:

groupadd -g 41 postgres &&
useradd -c "PostgreSQL Server" -g postgres -d /srv/pgsql/data \
        -u 41 postgres


There are several configuration items that add additional functionality with optional packages to PostgreSQL. Use ./configure --help to see a list.

Install PostgreSQL with the following commands:

sed -i '/DEFAULT_PGSOCKET_DIR/s@/tmp@/run/postgresql@' src/include/pg_config_manual.h &&

./configure --prefix=/usr          \
            --enable-thread-safety \
            --docdir=/usr/share/doc/postgresql-10.5 &&

There are a number of programs in the contrib/ directory. If you are going to run this installation as a server and wish to build some of them, enter make -C contrib or make -C contrib/<SUBDIR-NAME> for each subdirectory.

Tests must be run as an unprivileged user because they need to start a temporary server and this is prevented as the root user. For the same reason, you need to stop all PostgreSQL servers if any are running. If a previous version of PostgreSQL is installed, it may be necessary to use --disable-rpath with configure to avoid failures, but installing the binaries created using this switch is not recommended. To test the results, issue: make check.

Now, as the root user:

make install      &&
make install-docs

If you made any of the contrib/ programs, as the root user:

make -C contrib/<SUBDIR-NAME> install

If you only intend to use PostgreSQL as a client to connect to a server on another machine, your installation is complete and you should not run the remaining commands.

Initialize a database cluster with the following commands issued by the root user:

install -v -dm700 /srv/pgsql/data &&
install -v -dm755 /run/postgresql &&
chown -Rv postgres:postgres /srv/pgsql /run/postgresql

Now, initialize the database as the root user:

su - postgres -c '/usr/bin/initdb -D /srv/pgsql/data'

Command Explanations

sed -i ...: This sed changes server socket location from /tmp to /run/postgresql.

--docdir=/usr/share/doc/postgresql-10.5: This switch puts the documentation in a versioned directory.

--enable-thread-safety: This switch makes the client libraries thread-safe by allowing concurrent threads in libpq and ECPG programs to safely control their private connection handles.

--with-openssl: builds the package with support for OpenSSL encrypted connections.

--with-perl: builds the PL/Perl server-side language.

--with-python: builds the PL/Python server-side language. Add PYTHON=/usr/bin/python2 for Python2 support, otherwise Python3 is used by default.

--with-tcl: builds the PL/Tcl server-side language.

Configuring PostgreSQL

Config Files

$PGDATA/pg_ident.con, $PGDATA/pg_hba.conf and $PGDATA/postgresql.conf

The PGDATA environment variable is used to distinguish database clusters from one another by setting it to the value of the directory which contains the cluster desired. The three configuration files exist in every PGDATA/ directory. Details on the format of the files and the options that can be set in each can be found in file:///usr/share/doc/postgresql-10.5/html/index.html.

Systemd Unit

Install the postgresql.service unit included in the blfs-systemd-units-20180105 package.

make install-postgresql

Starting the PostgreSQL Server and Creating a Sample Database

The database server can be manually started with the following command (as the root user):

su - postgres -c '/usr/bin/postgres -D /srv/pgsql/data > \
                  /srv/pgsql/data/logfile 2>&1 &'


If you are scripting this part, you should wait for the server to start before going on, by adding for example sleep 2 after the above command.

The instructions below show how to create a database, add a table to it, insert some rows into the table and select them, to verify that the installation is working properly. Still as user root, issue:

su - postgres -c '/usr/bin/createdb test' &&
echo "create table t1 ( name varchar(20), state_province varchar(20) );" \
    | (su - postgres -c '/usr/bin/psql test ') &&
echo "insert into t1 values ('Billy', 'NewYork');" \
    | (su - postgres -c '/usr/bin/psql test ') &&
echo "insert into t1 values ('Evanidus', 'Quebec');" \
    | (su - postgres -c '/usr/bin/psql test ') &&
echo "insert into t1 values ('Jesse', 'Ontario');" \
    | (su - postgres -c '/usr/bin/psql test ') &&
echo "select * from t1;" | (su - postgres -c '/usr/bin/psql test')

When you are done with testing, you can shut down the server, by issuing as root:

su - postgres -c "/usr/bin/pg_ctl stop -D /srv/pgsql/data"


Installed Programs: clusterdb, createdb, createuser, dropdb, dropuser, ecpg, initdb, pg_archivecleanup, pg_basebackup, pg_config, pg_controldata, pg_ctl, pg_dump, pg_dumpall, pg_isready, pg_receivewal, pg_recvlogical, pg_resetwval, pg_restore, pg_rewind, pg_test_fsync, pg_test_timing, pg_upgrade, pg_waldump, pgbench, postgres, postmaster (deprecated), psql, reindexdb, vacuumdb, optionally, if Tcl support has been built, pltcl_delmod, pltcl_listmod, pltcl_loadmod, and optionally (in contrib/) oid2name, pg_standby, vacuumlo, and many others
Installed Libraries: libecpg.{so,a}, libecpg_compat.{so,a}, libpgcommon.a, libpgport.a, libpgtypes.{so,a}, libpq.{so,a}, various charset modules, and optionally programming language modules under /usr/lib/postgresql
Installed Directories: /usr/include/{libpq,postgresql}, /usr/lib/postgresql, /usr/share/{doc/postgresql-10.5,postgresql}, and /srv/pgsql

Short Descriptions


is a utility for reclustering tables in a PostgreSQL database.


creates a new PostgreSQL database.


defines a new PostgreSQL user account.


removes a PostgreSQL database.


removes a PostgreSQL user account.


is the embedded SQL preprocessor.


creates a new database cluster.


resolves OIDs (Object IDs) and file nodes in a PostgreSQL data directory.


cleans up PostgreSQL WAL (write-ahead log) archive files.


takes base backups of a running PostgreSQL cluster.


retrieves PostgreSQL version information.


returns information initialized during initdb, such as the catalog version and server locale.


controls stopping and starting the database server.


dumps database data and metadata into scripts which are used to recreate the database.


recursively calls pg_dump for each database in a cluster.


check the connection status of a PostgreSQL server.


is used to stream write-ahead logs from a PostgreSQL server.


controls PostgreSQL logical decoding streams.


resets the write-ahead log and other control information of a PostgreSQL database cluseter.


creates databases from dump files created by pg_dump.


synchronizes a PostgreSQL data directory with another data directory that was forked from the first one.


supports the creation of a PostgreSQL warm standby server.


determine fastest wal_sync method for PostgreSQL.


measure timing overhead.


upgrade a PostgreSQL server instance.


display a human-readable rendering of the write-ahead log of a PostgreSQL database cluster.


run a benchmark test on PostgreSQL.


is a support script used to delete a module from a PL/Tcl table. The command requires the Pgtcl package to be installed also.


is a support script used to list the modules in a PL/Tcl table. The command requires the Pgtcl package to be installed also.


is a support script used to load a module into a PL/Tcl table. The command requires the Pgtcl package to be installed also.


is the PostgreSQL database server.


(deprecated, a symlink to postgres) is a multi-user database daemon.


is a console based database shell.


is a utility for rebuilding indexes in a database.


compacts databases and generates statistics for the query analyzer.


remove orphaned large objects from a PostgreSQL database.


contains functions to support embedded SQL in C programs.


is the ecpg compatibility library.


is the port-specific subsystem of the Postgres backend.


contains functions for dealing with Postgres data types.


is the C programmer's API to Postgres.

Last updated on 2018-08-26 16:26:34 -0700