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627 Stars 91 Forks Apache License 2.0 255 Commits 24 Opened issues


Persistent dict, backed by sqlite3 and pickle, multithread-safe.

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sqlitedict -- persistent
, backed-up by SQLite and pickle

|Travis|_ |License|_

.. |Travis| image:: .. |Downloads| image:: .. |License| image:: .. _Travis: .. _Downloads: .. _License:

A lightweight wrapper around Python's sqlite3 database with a simple, Pythonic dict-like interface and support for multi-thread access:

.. code-block:: python

from sqlitedict import SqliteDict mydict = SqliteDict('./mydb.sqlite', autocommit=True) mydict['somekey'] = 'anypicklableobject' print(mydict['somekey']) # prints the new value anypicklableobject for key, value in mydict.iteritems(): ... print(key, value) somekey anypicklableobject print(len(mydict)) # etc... all dict functions work 1 mydict.close()

Pickle is used internally to (de)serialize the values. Keys are arbitrary strings, values arbitrary pickle-able objects.

If you don't use autocommit (default is no autocommit for performance), then don't forget to call

when done with a transaction:

.. code-block:: python

using SqliteDict as context manager works too (RECOMMENDED)

with SqliteDict('./mydb.sqlite') as mydict: # note no autocommit=True ... mydict['somekey'] = u"first value" ... mydict['anotherkey'] = range(10) ... mydict.commit() ... mydict['somekey'] = u"new value" ... # no explicit commit here with SqliteDict('./mydb.sqlite') as mydict: # re-open the same DB ... print(mydict['somekey']) # outputs 'first value', not 'new value' first value


  • Values can be any picklable objects (uses
    with the highest protocol).
  • Support for multiple tables (=dicts) living in the same database file.
  • Support for access from multiple threads to the same connection (needed by e.g. Pyro). Vanilla sqlite3 gives you
    ProgrammingError: SQLite objects created in a thread can
    only be used in that same thread.

Concurrent requests are still serialized internally, so this "multithreaded support" doesn't give you any performance benefits. It is a work-around for sqlite limitations in Python.

  • Support for custom serialization or compression:

.. code-block:: python

# use JSON instead of pickle

import json mydict = SqliteDict('./my_db.sqlite', encode=json.dumps, decode=json.loads)

# apply zlib compression after pickling

import zlib, pickle, sqlite3 def myencode(obj): ... return sqlite3.Binary(zlib.compress(pickle.dumps(obj, pickle.HIGHESTPROTOCOL))) def mydecode(obj): ... return pickle.loads(zlib.decompress(bytes(obj))) mydict = SqliteDict('./mydb.sqlite', encode=myencode, decode=mydecode)


The module has no dependencies beyond Python itself. The minimum Python version is 2.5, continuously tested on Python 2.7, and above on

on Github Actions 

Install or upgrade with::

pip install -U sqlitedict

or from the

source tar.gz 
python install


Standard Python document strings are inside the module:

.. code-block:: python

import sqlitedict help(sqlitedict)

(but it's just

with a commit, really).

Beware: because of Python semantics,

cannot know when a mutable SqliteDict-backed entry was modified in RAM. For example,
mydict.setdefault('new_key', []).append(1)
will leave
equal to empty list, not
. You'll need to explicitly assign the mutated object back to SqliteDict to achieve the same effect:

.. code-block:: python

val = mydict.get('newkey', []) val.append(1) # sqlite DB not updated here! mydict['newkey'] = val # now updated

For developers


# pip install pytest coverage pytest-coverage

To perform all tests::

# mkdir -p tests/db
# pytest tests

To perform all tests with coverage::

# pytest tests --cov=sqlitedict

Comments, bug reports

resides on
_. You can file issues or pull requests there.


.. code-block:: python

import os os.unlink('my_db.sqlite')

is open source software released under the
Apache 2.0 license 
. Copyright (c) 2011-now
Radim Řehůřek 
and contributors.

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