PostgreSQL error: Fatal: role "username" does not exist

Asked 9 years ago
Viewed 997.3 k times

I'm setting up my PostgreSQL 9.1. I can't do anything with PostgreSQL: can't createdb, can't createuser; all operations return the error message

Fatal: role h9uest does not exist

h9uest is my account name, and I sudo apt-get install PostgreSQL 9.1 under this account.
Similar error persists for the root account.

asked 9 years ago

Correct Answer

Use the operating system user postgres to create your database - as long as you haven't set up a database role with the necessary privileges that corresponds to your operating system user of the same name (h9uest in your case):

sudo -u postgres -i

As recommended here or here.

Then try again. Type exit when done with operating as system user postgres.

Or execute the single command createuser as postgres with sudo, like demonstrated by drees in another answer.

The point is to use the operating system user matching the database role of the same name to be granted access via ident authentication. postgres is the default operating system user to have initialized the database cluster. The manual:

In order to bootstrap the database system, a freshly initialized system always contains one predefined role. This role is always a “superuser”, and by default (unless altered when running initdb) it will have the same name as the operating system user that initialized the database cluster. Customarily, this role will be named postgres. In order to create more roles you first have to connect as this initial role.

I have heard of odd setups with non-standard user names or where the operating system user does not exist. You'd need to adapt your strategy there.

Read about database roles and client authentication in the manual.

answered 5 years ago

Other Answer

After trying many other people's solutions, and without success, this answer finally helped me.

In short, running

sudo -u postgres createuser owning_user

creates a role with name owning_user (in this case, h9uest). After that you can run rake db:create from the terminal under whatever account name you set up without having to enter into the Postgres environment.

answered 9 years ago