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plv8: JavaScript Language

The plv8 extension allows you use JavaScript within Postgres.


While Postgres natively runs SQL, it can also run other "procedural languages". plv8 allows you to run JavaScript code - specifically any code that runs on the V8 JavaScript engine.

It can be used for database functions, triggers, queries and more.


Enable the extension

  1. Go to the Database page in the Dashboard.
  2. Click on Extensions in the sidebar.
  3. Search for "plv8" and enable the extension.

Create plv8 functions

Functions written in plv8 are written just like any other PostgreSQL functions, only with the language identifier set to plv8.

create or replace function function_name() 
returns void as $$
// V8 JavaScript
// code
// here
$$ language plv8;

You can call plv8 functions like any other Postgres function:

select function_name();


Scalar functions

A scalar function is anything that takes in some user input and returns a single result.

create or replace function hello_world(name text) 
returns text as $$

let output = `Hello, ${name}!`;
return output;

$$ language plv8;

Executing SQL

You can execute SQL within plv8 code using the plv8.execute function.

create or replace function update_user(id bigint, first_name text) 
returns smallint as $$

var num_affected = plv8.execute(
'update profiles set first_name = $1 where id = $2',
[first_name, id]

return num_affected;
$$ language plv8;

Set-returning functions

A set-returning function is anything that returns a full set of results - for example, rows in a table.

create or replace function get_messages() 
returns setof messages as $$

var json_result = plv8.execute(
'select * from messages'

return json_result;
$$ language plv8;