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     initdb - create a new PostgreSQL database cluster

     initdb [ option... ]   [ --pgdata  ]  [ -D  ] directory

     initdb creates a new PostgreSQL database cluster. A database
     cluster  is  a collection of databases that are managed by a
     single server instance.

     Creating a database cluster consists of creating the  direc-
     tories  in which the database data will live, generating the
     shared catalog tables (tables that belong to the whole clus-
     ter  rather  than  to any particular database), and creating
     the template1 and postgres databases. When you later  create
     a  new  database,  everything  in  the template1 database is
     copied.  (Therefore,  anything  installed  in  template1  is
     automatically copied into each database created later.)  The
     postgres database is a default database  meant  for  use  by
     users, utilities and third party applications.

     Although initdb will attempt to create  the  specified  data
     directory, it might not have permission if the parent direc-
     tory of the desired data directory is  root-owned.  To  ini-
     tialize  in  such a setup, create an empty data directory as
     root, then use chown to assign ownership of  that  directory
     to the database user account, then su to become the database
     user to run initdb.

     initdb must be run as the user that will own the server pro-
     cess,  because  the server needs to have access to the files
     and directories that initdb creates.  Since the  server  may
     not  be run as root, you must not run initdb as root either.
     (It will in fact refuse to do so.)

     initdb initializes the database cluster's default locale and
     character set encoding. The collation order (LC_COLLATE) and
     character set classes (LC_CTYPE, e.g. upper,  lower,  digit)
     are  fixed  for all databases and can not be changed. Colla-
     tion orders other than C or POSIX also  have  a  performance
     penalty.   For  these  reasons it is important to choose the
     right locale  when  running  initdb.  The  remaining  locale
     categories  can be changed later when the server is started.
     All server locale values (lc_*) can be  displayed  via  SHOW
     ALL.  More details can be found in the documentation.

     The character set encoding can be set separately for a data-
     base  when it is created. initdb determines the encoding for
     the template1 database, which will serve as the default  for
     all  other  databases. To alter the default encoding use the
     --encoding option. More details can be found in the documen-

     -A authmethod

          This option specifies  the  authentication  method  for
          local  users  used  in  pg_hba.conf.  Do  not use trust
          unless you trust all local users on your system.  Trust
          is the default for ease of installation.

     -D directory

          This option specifies the directory where the  database
          cluster  should be stored. This is the only information
          required by initdb, but you can  avoid  writing  it  by
          setting  the  PGDATA environment variable, which can be
          convenient since the database server  (postmaster)  can
          find the database directory later by the same variable.

     -E encoding

          Selects the encoding of  the  template  database.  This
          will  also  be the default encoding of any database you
          create later, unless you override it there. The default
          is  derived  from the locale, or SQL_ASCII if that does
          not work. The character sets  supported  by  the  Post-
          greSQL server are described in the documentation.

          Sets the default locale for the  database  cluster.  If
          this  option  is not specified, the locale is inherited
          from the environment that initdb runs in.  Locale  sup-
          port is described in the documentation.






          Like --locale, but only sets the locale in  the  speci-
          fied category.

     -U username

          Selects the user name of the database  superuser.  This
          defaults  to  the  name  of  the effective user running
          initdb. It is really not important what the superuser's
          name  is,  but  one  might choose to keep the customary
          name postgres, even if the operating system user's name
          is different.


          Makes initdb prompt for a password to give the database
          superuser.  If you don't plan on using password authen-
          tication, this is not important. Otherwise you won't be
          able  to  use  password authentication until you have a
          password set up.

          Makes initdb read  the  database  superuser's  password
          from a file. The first line of the file is taken as the

     Other, less commonly used, parameters are also available:


          Print debugging output from the bootstrap backend and a
          few  other  messages of lesser interest for the general
          public.  The bootstrap backend is  the  program  initdb
          uses  to  create  the  catalog tables. This option gen-
          erates a tremendous amount of extremely boring output.

     -L directory
          Specifies where initdb should find its input  files  to
          initialize  the  database cluster. This is normally not
          necessary. You will be told  if  you  need  to  specify
          their location explicitly.


          By  default,  when  initdb  determines  that  an  error
          prevented  it  from  completely  creating  the database
          cluster, it removes  any  files  it  may  have  created
          before  discovering  that it can't finish the job. This
          option inhibits  tidying-up  and  is  thus  useful  for

          Specifies the directory where the database  cluster  is
          to be stored; may be overridden using the -D option.

     postgres(1), postmaster(1)

Man pages from Solaris 10 Update 8. See docs.sun.com and www.oracle.com for further documentation and Solaris information.