OPTIONS

findAndModify

findAndModify

The findAndModify command atomically modifies and returns a single document. By default, the returned document does not include the modifications made on the update. To return the document with the modifications made on the update, use the new option.

The command has the following syntax:

{
  findAndModify: <string>,
  query: <document>,
  sort: <document>,
  remove: <boolean>,
  update: <document>,
  new: <boolean>,
  fields: <document>,
  upsert: <boolean>
}

The findAndModify command takes the following fields:

Fields:
  • findAndModify (string) – Required. The collection against which to run the command.
  • query (document) – Optional. Specifies the selection criteria for the modification. The query field employs the same query selectors as used in the find() method. Although the query may match multiple documents, findAndModify will only select one document to modify.
  • sort (document) – Optional. Determines which document the operation will modify if the query selects multiple documents. findAndModify will modify the first document in the sort order specified by this argument.
  • remove (boolean) – Must specify either the remove or the update field in the findAndModify command. When true, removes the selected document. The default is false.
  • update (document) – Must specify either the remove or the update field in the findAndModify command. The update field employs the same update operators or field: value specifications to modify the selected document.
  • new (boolean) – Optional. When true, returns the modified document rather than the original. The findAndModify method ignores the new option for remove operations. The default is false.
  • fields (document) –

    Optional. A subset of fields to return. The fields document specifies an inclusion of a field with 1, as in the following:

    fields: { <field1>: 1, <field2>: 1, ... }
    

    See projection.

  • upsert (boolean) – Optional. Used in conjunction with the update field. When true, the findAndModify command creates a new document if the query returns no documents. The default is false.

The findAndModify command returns a document, similar to the following:

{
   lastErrorObject: {
                        updatedExisting: <boolean>,
                        upserted: <boolean>,
                        n: <num>,
                        connectionId: <num>,
                        err: <string>,
                        ok: <num>
   }
   value: <document>,
   ok: <num>
}

The return document contains the following fields:

  • The lastErrorObject field that returns the details of the command:
    • The updatedExisting field only appears if the command is either an update or an upsert.
    • The upserted field only appears if the command is an upsert.
  • The value field that returns either:
    • the original (i.e. pre-modification) document if new is false, or
    • the modified or inserted document if new: true.
  • The ok field that returns the status of the command.

Note

If the findAndModify finds no matching document, then:

  • for update or remove operations, lastErrorObject does not appear in the return document and the value field holds a null.

    { "value" : null, "ok" : 1 }
    
  • for an upsert operation that performs an insert, when new is false, and includes a sort option, the return document has lastErrorObject, value, and ok fields, but the value field holds an empty document {}.

  • for an upsert that performs an insert, when new is false without a specified sort the return document has lastErrorObject, value, and ok fields, but the value field holds a null.

    Changed in version 2.2: Previously, the command returned an empty document (e.g. {}) in the value field. See the 2.2 release notes for more information.

Consider the following examples:

  • The following command updates an existing document in the people collection where the document matches the query criteria:

    db.runCommand(
                    {
                      findAndModify: "people",
                      query: { name: "Tom", state: "active", rating: { $gt: 10 } },
                      sort: { rating: 1 },
                      update: { $inc: { score: 1 } }
                    }
                 )
    

    This command performs the following actions:

    1. The query finds a document in the people collection where the name field has the value Tom, the state field has the value active and the rating field has a value greater than 10.

    2. The sort orders the results of the query in ascending order. If multiple documents meet the query condition, the command will select for modification the first document as ordered by this sort.

    3. The update increments the value of the score field by 1.

    4. The command returns a document with the following fields:

      • The lastErrorObject field that contains the details of the command, including the field updatedExisting which is true, and
      • The value field that contains the original (i.e. pre-modification) document selected for this update:
      {
        "lastErrorObject" : {
           "updatedExisting" : true,
           "n" : 1,
           "connectionId" : 1,
           "err" : null,
           "ok" : 1
        },
        "value" : {
           "_id" : ObjectId("50f1d54e9beb36a0f45c6452"),
           "name" : "Tom",
           "state" : "active",
           "rating" : 100,
           "score" : 5
        },
        "ok" : 1
      }
      

      To return the modified document in the value field, add the new:true option to the command.

      If no document match the query condition, the command returns a document that contains null in the value field:

      { "value" : null, "ok" : 1 }
      

    The mongo shell and many drivers provide a findAndModify() helper method. Using the shell helper, this previous operation can take the following form:

    db.people.findAndModify( {
       query: { name: "Tom", state: "active", rating: { $gt: 10 } },
       sort: { rating: 1 },
       update: { $inc: { score: 1 } }
    } );
    

    However, the findAndModify() shell helper method returns just the unmodified document, or the modified document when new is true.

    {
       "_id" : ObjectId("50f1d54e9beb36a0f45c6452"),
       "name" : "Tom",
       "state" : "active",
       "rating" : 100,
       "score" : 5
    }
    
  • The following findAndModify command includes the upsert: true option to insert a new document if no document matches the query condition:

    db.runCommand(
                   {
                     findAndModify: "people",
                     query: { name: "Gus", state: "active", rating: 100 },
                     sort: { rating: 1 },
                     update: { $inc: { score: 1 } },
                     upsert: true
                   }
                 )
    

    If the command does not find a matching document, the command performs an upsert and returns a document with the following fields:

    • The lastErrorObject field that contains the details of the command, including the field upserted that contains the ObjectId of the newly inserted document, and
    • The value field that contains an empty document {} as the original document because the command included the sort option:
    {
      "lastErrorObject" : {
         "updatedExisting" : false,
         "upserted" : ObjectId("50f2329d0092b46dae1dc98e"),
         "n" : 1,
         "connectionId" : 1,
         "err" : null,
         "ok" : 1
      },
      "value" : {
    
      },
      "ok" : 1
    }
    

    If the command did not include the sort option, the value field would contain null:

    {
      "value" : null,
      "lastErrorObject" : {
         "updatedExisting" : false,
         "n" : 1,
         "upserted" : ObjectId("5102f7540cb5c8be998c2e99")
      },
      "ok" : 1
    }
    
  • The following findAndModify command includes both upsert: true option and the new:true option to return the newly inserted document in the value field if a document matching the query is not found:

    db.runCommand(
                   {
                     findAndModify: "people",
                     query: { name: "Pascal", state: "active", rating: 25 },
                     sort: { rating: 1 },
                     update: { $inc: { score: 1 } },
                     upsert: true,
                     new: true
                   }
                 )
    

    The command returns the newly inserted document in the value field:

    {
      "lastErrorObject" : {
         "updatedExisting" : false,
         "upserted" : ObjectId("50f47909444c11ac2448a5ce"),
         "n" : 1,
         "connectionId" : 1,
         "err" : null,
         "ok" : 1
      },
      "value" : {
         "_id" : ObjectId("50f47909444c11ac2448a5ce"),
         "name" : "Pascal",
         "rating" : 25,
         "score" : 1,
         "state" : "active"
      },
      "ok" : 1
    }
    

When the findAndModify command includes the upsert: true option and the query field(s) is not uniquely indexed, the method could insert a document multiple times in certain circumstances. For instance, if multiple clients issue the findAndModify command and these commands complete the find phase before any one starts the modify phase, these commands could insert the same document.

Consider an example where no document with the name Andy exists and multiple clients issue the following command:

db.runCommand(
               {
                 findAndModify: "people",
                 query: { name: "Andy" },
                 sort: { rating: 1 },
                 update: { $inc: { score: 1 } },
                 upsert: true
               }
             )

If all the commands finish the query phase before any command starts the modify phase, and there is no unique index on the name field, the commands may all perform an upsert. To prevent this condition, create a unique index on the name field. With the unique index in place, then the multiple findAndModify commands would observe one of the following behaviors:

  • Exactly one findAndModify would successfully insert a new document.
  • Zero or more findAndModify commands would update the newly inserted document.
  • Zero or more findAndModify commands would fail when they attempted to insert a duplicate. If the command fails due to a unique index constraint violation, you can retry the command. Absent a delete of the document, the retry should not fail.

Warning

When using findAndModify in a sharded environment, the query must contain the shard key for all operations against the shard cluster. findAndModify operations issued against mongos instances for non-sharded collections function normally.

Note

This command obtains a write lock on the affected database and will block other operations until it has completed; however, typically the write lock is short lived and equivalent to other similar update() operations.

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