5. Whats new in Casbah

5.1. Casbah 2.7 and Mongo DB 2.6 Features

MongoDB 2.6 introduces some new powerful features that are reflected in the 2.7.0 driver release. These include:

  • Aggregation cursors
  • Per query timeouts maxTimeMS
  • Ordered and Unordered bulk operations
  • A parallelCollectionScan command for fast reading of an entire collection
  • Integrated text search in the query language

Moreover the driver includes a whole slew of minor and major bug fixes and features. Some of the more noteworthy changes include.

  • Added extra type checking so that MongoDBObject.getAs[Type]("key") better protects against invalid type casting so there are fewer scenarios where it will an invalid Some(value).
  • Extended helpers for MongoDBObject.as[Type]("Keys"*) and MongoDBObject.getAs[Type]("keys" _*) for easier fetching of nested MongoDBObjects.
  • Fixed issue with OpLog matching - thanks to Brendan W. McAdams for the pull request.
  • Register the core Serialization helpers only once - thanks to Tuomas Huhtanen for the pull request.
  • Updated nscala-time to 0.6.0 and specs

Please see the full changelog and upgrade documentation.

Let’s look at the main things in 2.6 features one by one.

5.2. Aggregation cursors

MongoDB 2.6 adds the ability to return a cursor from the aggregation framework. To do that simply use AggregationOptions with the aggregation command:

val collection = MongoClient()("test")("aggregate")

val aggregationOptions = AggregationOptions(AggregationOptions.CURSOR)
val results = collection.aggregate(
    MongoDBObject("$project" ->
      MongoDBObject("author" -> 1, "tags" -> 1)
    MongoDBObject("$unwind" -> "$tags"),
    MongoDBObject("$group" ->
      MongoDBObject("_id" -> "$tags",
                    "authors" -> MongoDBObject("$addToSet" -> "$author")

Then the you can iterate the results of the aggregation as a normal cursor:

for (result <- results) println(result)

To learn more about aggregation see the aggregation tutorial and the aggregation reference documentation.

5.3. maxTime

One feature that has requested often is the ability to timeout individual queries. In MongoDB 2.6 it’s finally arrived and is known as maxTimeMS. In Casbah support for maxTimeMS is via an argument or via the query api but is called maxTime and takes a Duration

Let’s take a look at a simple usage of the property with a query:

val collection = MongoClient()("test")("maxTime")
val oneSecond = Duration(1, SECONDS)

collection.count(maxTime = oneSecond)

In the examples above the maxTimeMS is set to one second and the query will be aborted after the full second is up.

5.4. Ordered/Unordered bulk operations

Under the covers MongoDB is moving away from the combination of a write operation followed by get last error (GLE) and towards a write commands API. These new commands allow for the execution of bulk insert/update/remove operations. There are two types of bulk operations:

  1. Ordered bulk operations.

    Executes all the operation in order and error out on the first write error.

  2. Unordered bulk operations.

    These operations execute all the operations in parallel and aggregates up all the errors. Unordered bulk operations do not guarantee order of execution.

Let’s look at two simple examples using ordered and unordered operations:

val collection = MongoClient()("test")("bulkOperation")

// Ordered bulk operation
val builder = collection.initializeOrderedBulkOperation
builder.insert(MongoDBObject("_id" -> 1))
builder.insert(MongoDBObject("_id" -> 2))
builder.insert(MongoDBObject("_id" -> 3))

builder.find(MongoDBObject("_id" -> 1)).updateOne($set("x" -> 2))
builder.find(MongoDBObject("_id" -> 2)).removeOne()
builder.find(MongoDBObject("_id" -> 3)).replaceOne(MongoDBObject("_id" -> 3, "x" -> 4))

val result = builder.execute()

// Unordered bulk operation - no guarantee of order of operation
val builder = collection.initializeUnOrderedBulkOperation
builder.find(MongoDBObject("_id" -> 1)).removeOne()
builder.find(MongoDBObject("_id" -> 2)).removeOne()

val result2 = builder.execute()

For older servers than 2.6 the API will down convert the operations. However it’s not possible to down convert 100% so there might be slight edge cases where it cannot correctly report the right numbers.

5.5. parallelScan

The parallelCollectionScan command is a special command targeted at reading out an entire collection using multiple cursors.

Casbah adds support by adding the MongoCollection.parallelScan(options) method:

val collection = MongoClient()("test")("parallelScan")

for(i <- 1 to 1000) collection += MongoDBObject("_id" -> i)

val cursors = collection.parallelScan(ParallelScanOptions(3, 200))

for (cursor <- cursors) {
  while (cursor.hasNext) {

This can be used to optimize the IO throughput from a collection.

5.6. Integrated text search in the query language

Text indexes are now integrated into the main query language and enabled by default:

val collection = MongoClient()("test")("textSearch")
collection.ensureIndex( MongoDBObject("content" -> "text") )

collection += MongoDBObject("_id" -> 0, "content" -> "textual content")
collection += MongoDBObject("_id" -> 1, "content" -> "additional content")
collection += MongoDBObject("_id" -> 2, "content" -> "irrelevant content")

// Find using the text index
val result1 =  collection.find($text("textual content -irrelevant")).count

// Find using the $language operator
val result2 =  collection.find($text("textual content -irrelevant") $language "english").count

// Sort by score
val result3 = collection.findOne($text("textual content -irrelevant"), "score" $meta)