This guide will walk you through the steps used to install PostgreSQL 12 on Ubuntu 20.04/18.04/16.04 Linux system. PostgreSQL is one of the most widely adopted object-relational database management system based on POSTGRES 4.2. PostgreSQL 12 has been released for general use, fit for Production and all Development use cases.

For CentOS 7/8: How To Install PostgreSQL 12 on CentOS 7 / CentOS 8

For Fedora: Installing PostgreSQL 12 on Fedora

Debian: Install PostgreSQL 12 on Debian

If you want to see all the new features and improvements in PostgreSQL 12, visit the PostgreSQL 12 release notes page so check the major enhancements in PostgreSQL 12. Without much wait, let’s buckle to the installation of PostgreSQL 12 on Ubuntu 20.04/18.04/16.04 Linux system.

Step 1: Update system

It is recommended to update your current system packages if it is a new server instance.

sudo apt update
sudo apt -y install vim bash-completion wget
sudo apt -y upgrade

A reboot is necessary after an upgrade.

sudo reboot

Step 2: Add PostgreSQL 12 repository

We need to import GPG key and add PostgreSQL 12 repository into our Ubuntu machine. Run the following commands to accomplish this.

wget --quiet -O - | sudo apt-key add -

After importing GPG key, add repository contents to your Ubuntu 18.04/16.04 system:

echo "deb `lsb_release -cs`-pgdg main" |sudo tee  /etc/apt/sources.list.d/pgdg.list

The repository added contains many different packages including third party addons. They include:

  • postgresql-client
  • postgresql
  • libpq-dev
  • postgresql-server-dev
  • pgadmin packages

Step 3: Install PostgreSQL 12 on Ubuntu 20.04/18.04/16.04 LTS

Now the repository has been added successfully, update the package list and install PostgreSQL 12 server and client packages on your Ubuntu 20.04/18.04/16.04 Linux system.

sudo apt update
sudo apt -y install postgresql-12 postgresql-client-12

A successful installation prints a message that is similar to one shared in the next screenshot.

install postgresql 12 ubuntu 01

The PostgreSQL service is started and set to come up after every system reboot.

$ systemctl status postgresql.service 
 ● postgresql.service - PostgreSQL RDBMS
    Loaded: loaded (/lib/systemd/system/postgresql.service; enabled; vendor preset: enabled)
    Active: active (exited) since Sun 2019-10-06 10:23:46 UTC; 6min ago
  Main PID: 8159 (code=exited, status=0/SUCCESS)
     Tasks: 0 (limit: 2362)
    CGroup: /system.slice/postgresql.service
 Oct 06 10:23:46 ubuntu18 systemd[1]: Starting PostgreSQL RDBMS…
 Oct 06 10:23:46 ubuntu18 systemd[1]: Started PostgreSQL RDBMS.

$ systemctl status [email protected] [email protected] - PostgreSQL Cluster 12-main
    Loaded: loaded (/lib/systemd/system/[email protected]; indirect; vendor preset: enabled)
    Active: active (running) since Sun 2019-10-06 10:23:49 UTC; 5min ago
  Main PID: 9242 (postgres)
     Tasks: 7 (limit: 2362)
    CGroup: /system.slice/system-postgresql.slice/[email protected]
            ├─9242 /usr/lib/postgresql/12/bin/postgres -D /var/lib/postgresql/12/main -c config_file=/etc/postgresql/12/main/postgresql.conf
            ├─9254 postgres: 12/main: checkpointer   
            ├─9255 postgres: 12/main: background writer   
            ├─9256 postgres: 12/main: walwriter   
            ├─9257 postgres: 12/main: autovacuum launcher   
            ├─9258 postgres: 12/main: stats collector   
            └─9259 postgres: 12/main: logical replication launcher   
 Oct 06 10:23:47 ubuntu18 systemd[1]: Starting PostgreSQL Cluster 12-main…
 Oct 06 10:23:49 ubuntu18 systemd[1]: Started PostgreSQL Cluster 12-main.

$ systemctl is-enabled postgresql

Step 4: Test PostgreSQL Connection

During installation, a postgres user is created automatically. This user has full superadmin access to your entire PostgreSQL instance. Before you switch to this account, your logged in system user should have sudo privileges.

sudo su - postgres

Let’s reset this user password to a strong Password we can remember.

psql -c "alter user postgres with password '[email protected]'"

Start PostgreSQL prompt by using the command:

$ psql

Get connection details like below.

$ psql
psql (12.0 (Ubuntu 12.0-1.pgdg18.04+1))
Type "help" for help.

postgres=# \conninfo
You are connected to database "postgres" as user "postgres" via socket in "/var/run/postgresql" at port "5432".

Let’s create a test database and user to see if it’s working.

postgres=# CREATE DATABASE mytestdb;
postgres=# CREATE USER mytestuser WITH ENCRYPTED PASSWORD '[email protected]';
postgres=# GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES ON DATABASE mytestdb to mytestuser;

List created databases:

postgres=# \l
                               List of databases
   Name    |  Owner   | Encoding | Collate |  Ctype  |    Access privileges    
 mytestdb  | postgres | UTF8     | C.UTF-8 | C.UTF-8 | =Tc/postgres           +
           |          |          |         |         | postgres=CTc/postgres  +
           |          |          |         |         | mytestuser=CTc/postgres
 postgres  | postgres | UTF8     | C.UTF-8 | C.UTF-8 | 
 template0 | postgres | UTF8     | C.UTF-8 | C.UTF-8 | =c/postgres            +
           |          |          |         |         | postgres=CTc/postgres
 template1 | postgres | UTF8     | C.UTF-8 | C.UTF-8 | =c/postgres            +
           |          |          |         |         | postgres=CTc/postgres
(4 rows)

Connect to database:

postgres-# \c mytestdb
You are now connected to database "mytestdb" as user "postgres".

Other PostgreSQL utilities installed such as createuser and createdb can be used to create database and users.

[email protected]:~$ createuser myuser --password
[email protected]:~$ createdb mydb -O myuser
[email protected]:~$ psql -l 

We can create and connect to a database on PostgreSQL server.

Step 5: Configure remote Connection (Optional)

Installation of PostgreSQL 12 on Ubuntu only accepts connections from localhost. In ideal production environments, you’ll have a central database server and remote clients connecting to it – But of course within a private network (LAN).

To enable remote connections, edit PostgreSQL configuration file:

sudo nano /etc/postgresql/12/main/postgresql.conf 

Uncomment line 59 and change the Listen address to accept connections within your networks.

# Listen on all interfaces
listen_addresses = '*'

# Listen on specified private IP address
listen_addresses = ''

After the change, restart postgresql service.

sudo systemctl restart postgresql

Confirm Listening addresses.

# netstat  -tunelp | grep 5432
tcp        0      0  *               LISTEN      111        112837     11143/postgres      
tcp6       0      0 :::5432                 :::*                    LISTEN      111        112838     11143/postgres      

Step 6: Install pgAdmin4 Management Tool

If you want to manage your PostgreSQL database server from a web interface, then install pgAdmin4.

Install pgAdmin4 on Ubuntu

Enjoy using PostgreSQL 12 on Ubuntu 20.04/18.04/16.04. Other guides related to databases are shared in the list below.

How to Install PostGIS on Ubuntu

How to solve “MySQL server is running with the –secure-file-priv” Error

How to Install pgAdmin 4 on Debian 10 / Debian 9

How to Install pgAdmin 4 on CentOS 7

How to Install pgAdmin4 on FreeBSD 12

How to Install PostGIS on CentOS 7


  • Install PostgreSQL 12 on Ubuntu 20.04/18.04
  • Install PostgreSQL 12 on Ubuntu 16.04
  • Install PostgreSQL 12 on Ubuntu Linux
  • PostgreSQL 12 installation on Ubuntu 20.04/18.04/16.04
  • PostgreSQL 12 installation on Ubuntu 20.04

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