Database Essentials Postgres - Getting Started - Using psql to interact with Postgresql using CLI

In this article, we will explore how to use the psql utility to interact with a PostgreSQL database, performing various database operations. psql is a command-line tool that allows advanced database users to manage databases, tables, and load data for testing purposes.

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Key Concepts Explanation

Managing Databases and Tables

To connect to a PostgreSQL database server using psql, we need to have the Postgres client installed. We can run commands like psql -U postgres to connect to the server, with the PostgreSQL superuser postgres. Developers can connect to a database using their user credentials by specifying the hostname, database name, username, and password.

psql -h localhost -p 5432 -d itversity_sms_db -U itversity_sms_user -W

Common psql Commands

  • Listing Databases: \l
  • Switching to a Database: \c <DATABASE_NAME>
  • Get Help: \?
  • Listing Tables: \d
  • Creating a Table: CREATE TABLE t (i SERIAL PRIMARY KEY)
  • Viewing Table Details: \d <table_name>
  • Running Scripts: \i <SCRIPT_PATH>

Hands-On Tasks

  1. Connect to a PostgreSQL database using your credentials using psql.
  2. Explore the database using the listed psql commands.


In this article, we have learned how to use psql to interact with PostgreSQL databases. We have covered key concepts, essential commands, and practical tasks to help you get started with managing databases and tables using psql. Practice these commands to strengthen your database management skills.

Watch the video tutorial here