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createdb -- create a new PostgreSQL database


createdb [options...] [dbname] [description]


-h, --host host

Specifies the host name of the machine on which the server is running. If host begins with a slash, it is used as the directory for the Unix domain socket.

-p, --port port

Specifies the Internet TCP/IP port or the local Unix domain socket file extension on which the server is listening for connections.

-U, --username username

User name to connect as

-W, --password

Force password prompt.

-e, --echo

Echo the queries that createdb generates and sends to the server.

-q, --quiet

Do not display a response.

-D, --location datadir

Specifies the alternative location for the database. See also initlocation.

-T, --template template

Specifies the template database from which to build this database.

-E, --encoding encoding

Specifies the character encoding scheme to be used in this database.


Specifies the name of the database to be created. The name must be unique among all PostgreSQL databases in this installation. The default is to create a database with the same name as the current system user.


This optionally specifies a comment to be associated with the newly created database.

The options -h, -p, -U, -W, and -e are passed on literally to psql. The options -D, -T, and -E are converted into options for the underlying SQL command CREATE DATABASE; see there for more information about them.



The database was successfully created.

createdb: Database creation failed.

(Says it all.)

createdb: Comment creation failed. (Database was created.)

The comment/description for the database could not be created. The database itself will have been created already. You can use the SQL command COMMENT ON DATABASE to create the comment later on.

If there is an error condition, the backend error message will be displayed. See CREATE DATABASE and psql for possibilities.


createdb creates a new PostgreSQL database. The user who executes this command becomes the database owner.

createdb is a shell script wrapper around the SQL command CREATE DATABASE via the PostgreSQL interactive terminal psql. Thus, there is nothing special about creating databases via this or other methods. This means that the psql program must be found by the script and that a database server must be running at the targeted port. Also, any default settings and environment variables available to psql and the libpq front-end library will apply.


To create the database demo using the default database server:

$ createdb demo

The response is the same as you would have gotten from running the CREATE DATABASE SQL command.

To create the database demo using the server on host eden, port 5000, using the LATIN1 encoding scheme with a look at the underlying query:

$ createdb -p 5000 -h eden -E LATIN1 -e demo