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Databases - Practical PostgreSQL
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Using External Files to Enter Queries

As it is possible to use psql to enter queries directly from the prompt, it is possible to create queries and statements within files and let psql read the files and insert their content into the current buffer. This can be useful to some users.

First, enter your query into a file on your filesystem; after it is complete, open psql . The command to insert files into the current query buffer is \i. Example 6-1 shows how to insert a simple file-based SELECT command into the current buffer. Text from the query is displayed on-screen in the example, but this may not happen on your system by default. To see the lines of a file as it is being read, set the ECHO variable to all by typing \set ECHO all.

Example 6-1. Inserting a file into the current buffer

testdb=# 
\set ECHO all

testdb=# 
\i /usr/local/pgsql/query

SELECT * FROM employees WHERE firstname='Andrew';
 firstname | lastname | id
-----------+----------+-----
 Andrew    | Brookins | 100
(1 row)

If you find yourself doing this often for the sole purpose of using your favorite editor, using the \edit command would probably be more convenient.

Databases - Practical PostgreSQL
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