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Transaction layer for Node.js LevelDB.

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npm install level-transactions

level-transactions provides in-memory locking mechanism for key based operations, isolation and atomic commits. Also works across sublevels using SublevelUP.

level-transaction@2 rewrite introduces full compatibility with all common methods of LevelUP.


tx = transaction(db, [options])

Creates a transaction object. Accepts options of LevelUP plus following:

  • ttl: Time to live (milliseconds) of transaction object for liveness. Default to 20 seconds.
var db = level('./db', { valueEncoding: 'json' })
var transaction = require('level-transactions')

var tx = transaction(db)

Transaction instance inherits LevelUP, so one can expect all common methods of LevelUP can be used with same behaviour. The difference comes where key based operations are linearizable. Also result set are isolated within transaction, only persists atomically upon .commit() or discarded on .rollback().

Key Based Operations

Key based operations perform exclusive lock on keys applied. Under the hood, it maintains an internal queue such that operations within transaction executed sequentially.

Keys acquired during lock phase of transaction ensure mutually exclusive access. This makes .get() followed by a .put() a safe update operation.

All errors except NotFoundError will cause a rollback, as non-exist item is not considered an error in transaction.

var tx = transaction(db)
var tx2 = transaction(db)

tx.del('k', function () {
  //k is locked by tx, tx2 gets k after tx commits
  tx2.get('k', function (err, value) {
    //tx2 increments k
    tx2.put('k', value + 1)
tx.get('k', function (err) {
  //NotFoundError after tx del
tx.put('k', 167) //tx put value 167

tx.commit(function () {
  db.get('k', function (err, val) {
    //tx commit: val === 167
    tx2.commit(function () {
      db.get('k', function (err, val) {
        //tx2 commit: val === 168

Range Based Operations

Range based operations in level-transactions do NOT perform any locking. Instead it adopts LevelDOWN's behaviour, implicit snapshot at the time a read stream created.

This returns merged result set from database with write operations applied within transaction.

  {type: 'put', key: 'a', value: 'a'},
  {type: 'put', key: 'b', value: 'b'},
  {type: 'put', key: 'c', value: 'c'}
], function (err) {
  db.createKeyStream().on('data', ...) // 'a', 'b', 'c'

  var tx = transaction(db)
    {type: 'del', key: 'a'}
    {type: 'put', key: 'd', value: 'd'}
  ], function (err) {
    tx.createKeyStream().on('data', ...) // 'b', 'c', 'd'

  var tx2 = transaction(db)
    {type: 'put', key: '0', value: '0'}
    {type: 'del', key: 'b'}
  ], function (err) {
    tx2.createKeyStream().on('data', ...) // '0', 'a', 'c'

Transaction Specific


Commit writes, release locks acquired and close transaction.

Uses levelup's batch() under the hood. Changes are written to store atomically upon successful commit, or discarded upon error.

tx.rollback([error], [callback])

Release locks acquired and close transaction. Can optionally specify error. Changes are discarded and commit() callback with the specified error.

tx.get('foo', function (err, val) {
  if(val) return tx.rollback(new Error('existed.'))
  tx.put('foo', 'bar')
tx.commit(function (err) {
  //if 'foo' exists, err [Error: existed.]


Utility method for deferring execution order, which adds an asynchronous function fn(cb) to the internal queue. Callback cb(err) with error argument will result in rollback of transaction.

tx.put('foo', 'bar')
tx.get('foo', function (err, val) {
  //val === 'bar'
tx.defer(function (callback) {
  setTimeout(function () {
    callback() //execute next operation after callback
  }, 1000)
tx.get('foo', function (err, val) {
  //NotFoundError after del


Transaction works across SublevelUP sections, by initiating transaction with sublevel transaction(sub), or by adding the prefix: sub property.

var sublevel = require('sublevelup')
var db = sublevel(level('db'))
var sub = db.sublevel('sub')

var tx = transaction(db) // initiate with db
tx.put('foo', 'bar') // put db
tx.put('foo', 'foo', { prefix: sub }) // put sub
tx.get('foo', cb) // get db
tx.get('foo', { prefix: sub }, cb) // get sub

var tx2 = transaction(sub) // initiate with sublevel
tx.put('foo', 'hello') // put sub
tx.put('foo', 'world', { prefix: db }) // put db
tx.get('foo', cb) // get sub
tx.get('foo', { prefix: db }, cb) // get db





Transaction layer for Node.js LevelDB




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