Package pq is a pure Go Postgres driver for the database/sql package.

In most cases clients will use the database/sql package instead of using this package directly. For example:

import (

	_ ""

func main() {
	db, err := sql.Open("postgres", "user=pqgotest dbname=pqgotest sslmode=verify-full")
	if err != nil {

	age := 21
	rows, err := db.Query("SELECT name FROM users WHERE age = $1", age)

You can also connect to a database using a URL. For example:

db, err := sql.Open("postgres", "postgres://pqgotest:[email protected]/pqgotest?sslmode=verify-full")

Connection String Parameters

Similarly to libpq, when establishing a connection using pq you are expected to supply a connection string containing zero or more parameters. A subset of the connection parameters supported by libpq are also supported by pq. Additionally, pq also lets you specify run-time parameters (such as search_path or work_mem) directly in the connection string. This is different from libpq, which does not allow run-time parameters in the connection string, instead requiring you to supply them in the options parameter.

For compatibility with libpq, the following special connection parameters are supported:

* dbname - The name of the database to connect to
* user - The user to sign in as
* password - The user's password
* host - The host to connect to. Values that start with / are for unix domain sockets. (default is localhost)
* port - The port to bind to. (default is 5432)
* sslmode - Whether or not to use SSL (default is require, this is not the default for libpq)
* fallback_application_name - An application_name to fall back to if one isn't provided.
* connect_timeout - Maximum wait for connection, in seconds. Zero or not specified means wait indefinitely.
* sslcert - Cert file location. The file must contain PEM encoded data.
* sslkey - Key file location. The file must contain PEM encoded data.
* sslrootcert - The location of the root certificate file. The file must contain PEM encoded data.

Valid values for sslmode are:

* disable - No SSL
* require - Always SSL (skip verification)
* verify-ca - Always SSL (verify that the certificate presented by the server was signed by a trusted CA)
* verify-full - Always SSL (verify that the certification presented by the server was signed by a trusted CA and the server host name matches the one in the certificate)

See for more information about connection string parameters.

Use single quotes for values that contain whitespace:

"user=pqgotest password='with spaces'"

A backslash will escape the next character in values:

"user=space\ man password='it\'s valid'

Note that the connection parameter client_encoding (which sets the text encoding for the connection) may be set but must be "UTF8", matching with the same rules as Postgres. It is an error to provide any other value.

In addition to the parameters listed above, any run-time parameter that can be set at backend start time can be set in the connection string. For more information, see

Most environment variables as specified at supported by libpq are also supported by pq. If any of the environment variables not supported by pq are set, pq will panic during connection establishment. Environment variables have a lower precedence than explicitly provided connection parameters.


database/sql does not dictate any specific format for parameter markers in query strings, and pq uses the Postgres-native ordinal markers, as shown above. The same marker can be reused for the same parameter:

rows, err := db.Query(`SELECT name FROM users WHERE favorite_fruit = $1
	OR age BETWEEN $2 AND $2 + 3`, "orange", 64)

pq does not support the LastInsertId() method of the Result type in database/sql. To return the identifier of an INSERT (or UPDATE or DELETE), use the Postgres RETURNING clause with a standard Query or QueryRow call:

var userid int
err := db.QueryRow(`INSERT INTO users(name, favorite_fruit, age)
	VALUES('beatrice', 'starfruit', 93) RETURNING id`).Scan(&userid)

For more details on RETURNING, see the Postgres documentation:

For additional instructions on querying see the documentation for the database/sql package.


pq may return errors of type *pq.Error which can be interrogated for error details:

if err, ok := err.(*pq.Error); ok {
    fmt.Println("pq error:", err.Code.Name())

See the pq.Error type for details.

Bulk imports

You can perform bulk imports by preparing a statement returned by pq.CopyIn (or pq.CopyInSchema) in an explicit transaction (sql.Tx). The returned statement handle can then be repeatedly "executed" to copy data into the target table. After all data has been processed you should call Exec() once with no arguments to flush all buffered data. Any call to Exec() might return an error which should be handled appropriately, but because of the internal buffering an error returned by Exec() might not be related to the data passed in the call that failed.

CopyIn uses COPY FROM internally. It is not possible to COPY outside of an explicit transaction in pq.

Usage example:

txn, err := db.Begin()
if err != nil {

stmt, err := txn.Prepare(pq.CopyIn("users", "name", "age"))
if err != nil {

for _, user := range users {
	_, err = stmt.Exec(user.Name, int64(user.Age))
	if err != nil {

_, err = stmt.Exec()
if err != nil {

err = stmt.Close()
if err != nil {

err = txn.Commit()
if err != nil {


PostgreSQL supports a simple publish/subscribe model over database connections. See for more information about the general mechanism.

To start listening for notifications, you first have to open a new connection to the database by calling NewListener. This connection can not be used for anything other than LISTEN / NOTIFY. Calling Listen will open a "notification channel"; once a notification channel is open, a notification generated on that channel will effect a send on the Listener.Notify channel. A notification channel will remain open until Unlisten is called, though connection loss might result in some notifications being lost. To solve this problem, Listener sends a nil pointer over the Notify channel any time the connection is re-established following a connection loss. The application can get information about the state of the underlying connection by setting an event callback in the call to NewListener.

A single Listener can safely be used from concurrent goroutines, which means that there is often no need to create more than one Listener in your application. However, a Listener is always connected to a single database, so you will need to create a new Listener instance for every database you want to receive notifications in.

The channel name in both Listen and Unlisten is case sensitive, and can contain any characters legal in an identifier (see for more information). Note that the channel name will be truncated to 63 bytes by the PostgreSQL server.

You can find a complete, working example of Listener usage at

pq is referenced in 0 repositories