Create User in postgres with pgx (SQLSTATE 42601)

Issue

I am trying to create a user in postgres. currently trying to use https://github.com/jackc/pgx as the driver to connect to the db. I have the below

package main

import (
    "context"
    "fmt"
    "os"

    "github.com/jackc/pgx/v4"
)

func main() {
    ctx := context.Background()
    conn, err := pgx.Connect(ctx, "host=localhost port=5432 user=postgres password=postgres dbname=postgres")
    if err != nil {
        panic(err)
    }
    defer conn.Close(ctx)

    // create user
    _, err = conn.Exec(ctx, "CREATE USER $1 WITH PASSWORD $2", "moulick", "testpass")
    if err != nil {
        fmt.Println(err)
        os.Exit(1)
    }
}

But I get this ERROR: syntax error at or near "$1" (SQLSTATE 42601)

I don’t get what’s the problem here ?

Solution

"I don’t get what’s the problem here ?" — The problem is that positional parameters can be used only for values, and not for identifiers.

A positional parameter reference is used to indicate a value that is supplied externally to an SQL statement.

You cannot use positional parameters in CREATE USER <user_name> the same way you cannot use them in SELECT t.<column_name> FROM <table_name> AS t.

user_name := "moulick"
_, err = conn.Exec(ctx, "CREATE USER "+user_name+" WITH PASSWORD $1", "testpass")
if err != nil {
    fmt.Println(err)
    os.Exit(1)
}

If the user_name is not hardcoded, but instead comes from an unknown user input, you need to validate it yourself to avoid the possibility of SQL injections. This is not a difficult task since the lexical structure of identifiers is limited to a small set of rules, which you can further reduce to an even smaller subset if you like (e.g. disallowing diacritical marks and non-Latin letters):

SQL identifiers and key words must begin with a letter (a-z, but also
letters with diacritical marks and non-Latin letters) or an underscore
(_). Subsequent characters in an identifier or key word can be
letters, underscores, digits (0-9), or dollar signs ($). Note that
dollar signs are not allowed in identifiers according to the letter of
the SQL standard, so their use might render applications less
portable. The SQL standard will not define a key word that contains
digits or starts or ends with an underscore, so identifiers of this
form are safe against possible conflict with future extensions of the
standard.

Answered By – mkopriva

Answer Checked By – Willingham (GoLangFix Volunteer)

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