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    Author message:

    The AWS SDK now includes the DocumentClient ( and Converter (, which provide official support for converting DynamoDB documents to and from POJOs


    2.0.0 • Public • Published

    dynamoDb-marshaler Build Status


    Translates sane javascript objects (and JSON) into DynamoDb format and vice versa.

    Caveat Does not yet work with Binary types (B and BS). I have personally never come across a case where I'm using binary types in json. If you need binary support, please let me know how it might be done, or contribute.


    Translation of DynamoDb AttributeValue objects is cumbersome and makes working with the aws-sdk-js more difficult than it needs to be. This library abstracts away the verbose tiresome mappings and lets you work with standard javascript (JSON) data like you're used to.


    npm install dynamodb-marshaler

    Basic Marshaling of Objects

    var AWS = require('aws-sdk');
    var marshalItem = require('dynamodb-marshaler').marshalItem;
    AWS.config.region = 'us-west-2';
    var dynamoDb = new AWS.DynamoDB();
      TableName: 'users',
      Item: marshalItem({username: 'nackjicholson'})  // {username: {S: 'nackjicholson'}}

    Basic Unmarshaling of Objects

    var AWS = require('aws-sdk');
    var unmarshalItem = require('dynamodb-marshaler').unmarshalItem;
    AWS.config.region = 'us-west-2';
    var dynamoDb = new AWS.DynamoDB();
    var data = dynamoDb.scan({
      TableName: 'users'
    }, function(err, data) {
      // data.Items = [{username: {S: 'nackjicholson'}]
      var items =;
      console.log(items); // [{username: 'nackjicholson'}]

    Single Value Marshaling

    var marshal = require('dynamodb-marshaler/marshal');
    console.log(marshal('nackjicholson')); // {S: 'nackjicholson'}
    console.log(marshal(true)); // {BOOL: true}
    console.log(marshal([1, 2, 3])); // {NS: ['1', '2', '3']}


    .marshalItem (alias .toDDB)
    .unmarshalItem (alias .toJS)


    In the ./dist directory of this repo there is a browser compatible version of this library which can be used as a browser global, AMD, or CommonJS/Node module. Check the examples/example.html file for basic usage.


    You can marshal directly from a JSON string using marshalJson. As well as, unmarshal a DynamoDb api response into a JSON string with unmarshalJson.


    The examples directory contains a couple of node scripts which use the marshaler. If you clone this repo you can run them easily using these commands:

    node examples/example-marshal.js
    node examples/example-unmarshal.js

    They showcase all the conversions this library can perform.

    The examples/example.html showcases use of dynamodb-marshaler in the browser environment. It can be run simply by opening the example in a web browser. Or you can check it out at this Plunkr

    Understanding the rules

    Empty strings

    DynamoDB does not allow saving of an empty string "". The marshaler treats this as an error.

    Sets vs Lists

    Javascript has one list type -- arrays, but DynamoDB has sets and lists. How does the marshaler distinguish between the two?

    Here's a table:

    input marshaled value
    Strings/No duplicates ["foo", "bar"] {"SS": ["foo", "bar"]}
    Numbers/No duplicates [42, 43] {"NS": ["42", "43"]}
    Empty [] {"L": []}
    Mixed [42, "foo", null] {"L": [{"N": "42"}, {"S": "foo"}, {"NULL": true}]}
    Duplicates ["foo", "bar", "foo"] {"L": [{"S": "foo"}, {"S": "bar"}, {"S": "foo"}]}


    Pull requests are welcome. Please run unit tests and linter.

    npm test, npm run lint, and npm run cov.




    npm i dynamodb-marshaler

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    • cberube
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    • nackjicholson