pg_config executable not found.


When working with PostgreSQL, encountering the “pg_config executable not found.” error can be frustrating. This error typically occurs during the installation or configuration of PostgreSQL-related tools and extensions. In this article, we will explore what causes this error, provide solutions to resolve it, and answer frequently asked questions (FAQs) to help you navigate this common PostgreSQL issue.

Understanding the “pg_config Executable Not Found.” Error

1. What Is pg_config?

pg_config executable not found. is a command-line utility that comes with PostgreSQL. It provides essential configuration information about your PostgreSQL installation, such as compiler and linker flags, version details, and the locations of various PostgreSQL components.

2. Why Does the Error Occur?

The “pg_config executable not found.” error occurs when the system or a software tool expects to find the pg_config executable but cannot locate it. This typically happens during the installation or configuration of PostgreSQL-related tools, extensions, or drivers that depend on pg_config to gather information about the PostgreSQL installation.

Common Causes of the Error

Several factors can lead to the “pg_config executable not found.” error:

  • Incomplete PostgreSQL Installation: If PostgreSQL is not properly installed on your system, the pg_config executable may be missing.
  • Incorrect PATH Variable: If the directory containing pg_config is not included in your system’s PATH variable, other tools may have trouble locating it.
  • Missing Development Packages: Some software tools and extensions require development packages for PostgreSQL to be installed. If these packages are missing, pg_config may not be available.
  • Incorrect Environment Setup: Issues with your system’s environment variables or settings can also prevent tools from finding pg_config.

Solutions to Resolve the Error

1. Verify PostgreSQL Installation

Ensure that PostgreSQL is correctly installed on your system. You can do this by running the following command:


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postgres –version

If PostgreSQL is installed, this command will display the installed version. If it’s not installed, you need to install PostgreSQL first.

2. Check PATH Variable

Confirm that the directory containing pg_config is included in your system’s PATH variable. You can add it manually by editing your shell configuration file (e.g., .bashrc, .bash_profile, or .zshrc) and adding the following line:


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export PATH=$PATH:/path/to/pg_config_directory

Don’t forget to replace /path/to/pg_config_directory with the actual path to your pg_config directory.

3. Install Development Packages

If you are trying to compile software that depends on PostgreSQL, make sure you have the necessary development packages installed. On Debian-based systems, you can use:


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sudo apt-get install libpq-dev

On Red Hat-based systems, use:


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sudo yum install postgresql-devel

4. Check Environment Variables

Review your system’s environment variables, including PGDATA, PGPORT, and PGHOST. Ensure that these variables are correctly set and point to your PostgreSQL installation.

5. Recompile the Affected Software

If you encounter the error while compiling software, try recompiling it after ensuring that the above steps have been followed. This may resolve the issue.

FAQs About the “pg_config Executable Not Found” Error

Let’s address some common questions related to this error:

Q1: I’m using Windows. Can I encounter this error too?

  • Yes, Windows users can encounter this error, especially when working with PostgreSQL-related tools or extensions that require pg_config.

Q2: What is the purpose of the pg_config executable?

  • pg_config provides essential information about your PostgreSQL installation, making it easier for other tools and extensions to compile and interact with PostgreSQL.

Q3: How can I find the location of pg_config on my system?

  • You can use the which pg_config command on Unix-like systems or where pg_config on Windows to determine the path to pg_config.

Q4: I’ve followed the solutions, but the error persists. What should I do?

  • If the error persists, consider seeking help on PostgreSQL-related forums or communities, as there may be specific issues with your environment.

Q5: Are there alternative ways to gather PostgreSQL configuration information?

  • Yes, you can use PostgreSQL’s pg_controldata command to obtain some configuration details, although it may not provide the same level of information as pg_config.


The “pg_config executable not found” error is a common issue when working with PostgreSQL-related tools and extensions. Understanding the causes and following the provided solutions can help you resolve this error and continue working with PostgreSQL seamlessly. If you encounter persistent issues, seeking assistance from the PostgreSQL community or relevant forums can provide valuable insights to overcome this challenge.

By Alice

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