PostgreSQL Installation Primer for Windows

by Todd Ogasawara

PgAdmin IIII generally work in a LAMP environment. So, I was interested to read PostgreSQL on Windows: A Primer announced on Port 25. I had looked briefly at PostgreSQL about 3 or 4 years ago. But, MySQL had always suited my database needs well. It also seemed to my MySQL spoiled fingers that PostgreSQL required a lot more manual intervention to install on Linux (compared to MySQL). So, I haven't revisited PostgreSQL since then.

The PostgreSQL server was not available for Windows back then (though I seem to recall some kind of client piece was). And, I had not realized that a version for Windows was now available. This was enough to pique my curiousity. So, I fired up a previously built and fully patched Windows Server 2003 R2 Enterprise Edition virtual machine in Virtual PC 2007, attached a shared folder pointing at a directory on the physical hard drive (for unpacking the installation files), downloaded PostgreSQL 8.2.3-1 for Microsoft Windows and followed along the instructions in the 11 page primer (9 pages of instructions with lots of nice screen captures). Chris Travers' instructions were very easy to follow and understand. You'll want to read it carefully though since some recommendations are not reflected in the screen caps (e.g., he recommends that character encoding be set to UTF-8 but the screen cap shows the default SQL_ASCII setting).

I fired up the bundled Pg Admin III GUI and it looks like PostgreSQL is running on my virtual machine. Nothing is as simple as installing MySQL from RPM files in Linux (one command line and set the root passwords). But, installing PostgreSQL for Windows was smooth and painless with Chris' Primer as a guide.