Simple to use local JSON database (supports Node, Electron and the browser)

pushedAt 1 month ago


lowdb Node.js CI

Simple to use local JSON database 🦉

// This is pure JS, not specific to lowdb ;)
db.data.posts.push({ id: 1, title: 'lowdb is awesome' })

// Save to file
// db.json
  "posts": [
    { "id": 1, "title": "lowdb is awesome" }

If you like lowdb, see also xv (test runner) and steno (fast file writer).


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  • Lightweight
  • Minimalist and easy to learn API
  • Query and modify data using plain JS
  • Improved TypeScript support
  • Atomic write
  • Hackable:
    • Change storage, file format (JSON, YAML, ...) or add encryption via adapters
    • Add lodash, ramda, ... for super powers!


npm install lowdb


Lowdb 3 is a pure ESM package. If you're having trouble importing it in your project, please read this.

import { join, dirname } from 'path'
import { Low, JSONFile } from 'lowdb'
import { fileURLToPath } from 'url'

const __dirname = dirname(fileURLToPath(import.meta.url));

// Use JSON file for storage
const file = join(__dirname, 'db.json')
const adapter = new JSONFile(file)
const db = new Low(adapter)

// Read data from JSON file, this will set db.data content
await db.read()

// If file.json doesn't exist, db.data will be null
// Set default data
// db.data = db.data || { posts: [] } // Node < v15.x
db.data ||= { posts: [] }             // Node >= 15.x

// Create and query items using plain JS
db.data.posts.push('hello world')

// You can also use this syntax if you prefer
const { posts } = db.data
posts.push('hello world')

// Write db.data content to db.json
await db.write()
// db.json
  "posts": [ "hello world" ]


Lowdb now comes with TypeScript support. You can even type db.data content.

type Data = {
  posts: string[] // Expect posts to be an array of strings
const adapter = new JSONFile<Data>('db.json')
const db = new Low<Data>(adapter)

  .push(1) // TypeScript error 🎉


You can easily add lodash or other utility libraries to improve lowdb.

import lodash from 'lodash'

// ...
// Note: db.data needs to be initialized before lodash.chain is called.
db.chain = lodash.chain(db.data)

// Instead of db.data, you can now use db.chain if you want to use the powerful API that lodash provides
const post = db.chain
  .find({ id: 1 })
  .value() // Important: value() needs to be called to execute chain

More examples

For CLI, server and browser usage, see examples/ directory.



Lowdb has two classes (for asynchronous and synchronous adapters).

new Low(adapter)

import { Low, JSONFile } from 'lowdb'

const db = new Low(new JSONFile('file.json'))
await db.read()
await db.write()

new LowSync(adapterSync)

import { LowSync, JSONFileSync } from 'lowdb'

const db = new LowSync(new JSONFileSync('file.json'))



Calls adapter.read() and sets db.data.

Note: JSONFile and JSONFileSync adapters will set db.data to null if file doesn't exist.

db.data // === null
db.data // !== null


Calls adapter.write(db.data).

db.data = { posts: [] }
db.write() // file.json will be { posts: [] }
db.data = {}
db.write() // file.json will be {}



Holds your db content. If you're using the adapters coming with lowdb, it can be any type supported by JSON.stringify.

For example:

db.data = 'string'
db.data = [1, 2, 3]
db.data = { key: 'value' }


Lowdb adapters


Adapters for reading and writing JSON files.

new Low(new JSONFile(filename))
new LowSync(new JSONFileSync(filename))

Memory MemorySync

In-memory adapters. Useful for speeding up unit tests.

new Low(new Memory())
new LowSync(new MemorySync())


Synchronous adapter for window.localStorage.

new LowSync(new LocalStorage(name))

TextFile TextFileSync

Adapters for reading and writing text. Useful for creating custom adapters.

Third-party adapters

If you've published an adapter for lowdb, feel free to create a PR to add it here.

Writing your own adapter

You may want to create an adapter to write db.data to YAML, XML, encrypt data, a remote storage, ...

An adapter is a simple class that just needs to expose two methods:

class AsyncAdapter {
  read() { /* ... */ } // should return Promise<data>
  write(data) { /* ... */ } // should return Promise<void>

class SyncAdapter {
  read() { /* ... */ } // should return data
  write(data) { /* ... */ } // should return nothing

For example, let's say you have some async storage and want to create an adapter for it:

import { api } from './AsyncStorage'

class CustomAsyncAdapter {
  // Optional: your adapter can take arguments
  constructor(args) {
    // ...

  async read() {
    const data = await api.read()
    return data

  async write(data) {
    await api.write(data)

const adapter = new CustomAsyncAdapter()
const db = new Low(adapter)

See src/adapters/ for more examples.

Custom serialization

To create an adapter for another format than JSON, you can use TextFile or TextFileSync.

For example:

import { Adapter, Low, TextFile } from 'lowdb'
import YAML from 'yaml'

class YAMLFile {
  constructor(filename) {
    this.adapter = new TextFile(filename)

  async read() {
    const data = await this.adapter.read()
    if (data === null) {
      return null
    } else {
      return YAML.parse(data)

  write(obj) {
    return this.adapter.write(YAML.stringify(obj))

const adapter = new YAMLFile('file.yaml')
const db = new Low(adapter)


Lowdb doesn't support Node's cluster module.

If you have large JavaScript objects (~10-100MB) you may hit some performance issues. This is because whenever you call db.write, the whole db.data is serialized and written to storage.

Depending on your use case, this can be fine or not. It can be mitigated by doing batch operations and calling db.write only when you need it.

If you plan to scale, it's highly recommended to use databases like PostgreSQL, MongoDB, ...

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