What is Versioning?

Versioning is the process of tracking changes to database items. When an item is altered, the original data isn’t overwritten; instead, a new version is generated. Each version can be uniquely identified, typically via a timestamp or version number. Versioning is exceptionally useful in scenarios involving simultaneous updates from multiple users or systems, as it prevents conflicts and data loss.

Implementing Versioning in DynamoDB:

Though DynamoDB lacks built-in versioning, it can be implemented using attributes and conditional writes. Steps include:

  1. Adding a Version Attribute: First, create a version attribute for your DynamoDB items. This attribute holds the version number of each item.
  2. Utilizing Conditional Writes: Conditional writes let you specify conditions for successful write operations. For example, with versioning, you can increment the version number every time an item is updated. By using conditional writes, you can ensure that the item hasn’t been modified by another user or process before the update is applied.
  3. Handling Write Conflicts: If a write conflict occurs (when the conditional write fails) - you can retry the update, merge changes, or alert the user.
  4. Maintaining a History (Optional): In certain situations, you can keep a record of item versions.