The following runtime environments are known to be compatible:

  • Node.js version 12 or later
  • Deno
  • CloudFlare Workers
  • Netlify & Vercel Edge Functions

The JavaScript SDK comes with TypeScript bindings and supports environments where either language can be used. Both ESM and CJS modules are provided.

Installing

Begin by installing the @libsql/client dependency in your project:

npm install @libsql/client

Initializing

Import createClient to initialize a client that you can use to query your database:

import { createClient } from "@libsql/client";

export const turso = createClient({
  url: process.env.TURSO_DATABASE_URL,
  authToken: process.env.TURSO_AUTH_TOKEN,
});

If you’re using libsql locally or an sqlite file, you can ignore passing authToken.

In-Memory Databases

libSQL supports connecting to in-memory databases for cases where you don’t require persistence:

import { createClient } from "@libsql/client";

const client = createClient({
  url: ":memory:",
});

Local Development

You can work locally using an SQLite file and passing the path to createClient:

import { createClient } from "@libsql/client";

const client = createClient({
  url: "file:path/to/db-file.db",
  authToken: "...",
});

The @libsql/client/web does not support local file URLs.

Embedded Replicas

You can work with embedded replicas by passing your Turso Database URL to syncUrl:

import { createClient } from "@libsql/client";

const client = createClient({
  url: "file:path/to/db-file.db",
  syncUrl: "libsql://[databaseName]-[organizationName].turso.io",
  authToken: "...",
});

Embedded Replicas only works where you have access to the file system.

Manual Sync

The sync() function allows you to sync manually the local database with the remote counterpart:

await client.sync();

Periodic Sync

You can automatically sync at intervals by configuring the syncInterval (seconds) property when instantiating a new libSQL client:

import { createClient } from "@libsql/client";

const client = createClient({
  url: "file:path/to/db-file.db",
  syncUrl: "libsql://[databaseName]-[organizationName].turso.io",
  syncInterval: 60,
  authToken: "...",
});

Encryption

To enable encryption on a SQLite file, pass the encryptionKey:

TypeScript
import { createClient } from "@libsql/client";

const db = createClient({
  url: "file:encrypted.db",
  encryptionKey: process.env.ENCRYPTION_KEY,
});

Encrypted databases appear as raw data and cannot be read as standard SQLite databases. You must use the libSQL client for any operations — learn more.

Response

Each method listed below returns a Promise<ResultSet>:

PropertyTypeDescription
rowsArray<Row>An array of Row objects containing the row values, empty for write operations
columnsArray<string>An array of strings with the names of the columns in the order they appear in each Row, empty for write operations
rowsAffectednumberThe number of rows affected by a write statement, 0 otherwise
lastInsertRowidbigint | undefinedThe ID of a newly inserted row, or undefined if there is none for the statement

Simple query

You can pass a string or object to execute() to invoke a SQL statement:

const result = await client.execute("SELECT * FROM users");

Placeholders

libSQL supports the use of positional and named placeholders within SQL statements:

const result = await client.execute({
  sql: "SELECT * FROM users WHERE id = ?",
  args: [1],
});

const result = await client.batch(
  [
    {
      sql: "INSERT INTO users VALUES (?)",
      args: ["Iku"],
    },
  ],
  "write"
);

libSQL supports the same named placeholder characters as SQLite — :, @ and $.

Transaction Modes

ModeSQLite commandDescription
writeBEGIN IMMEDIATEThe transaction may execute statements that read and write data. Write transactions executed on a replica are forwarded to the primary instance, and can’t operate in parallel.
readBEGIN TRANSACTION READONLYThe transaction may only execute statements that read data (select). Read transactions can occur on replicas, and can operate in parallel with other read transactions.
deferredBEGIN DEFERREDThe transaction starts in read mode, then changes to write as soon as a write statement is executed. This mode change may fail if there is a write transaction currently executing on the primary.

Batch Transactions

A batch consists of multiple SQL statements executed sequentially within an implicit transaction. The backend handles the transaction: success commits all changes, while any failure results in a full rollback with no modifications.

const result = await client.batch(
  [
    {
      sql: "INSERT INTO users VALUES (?)",
      args: ["Iku"],
    },
    {
      sql: "INSERT INTO users VALUES (?)",
      args: ["Iku 2"],
    },
  ],
  "write"
);

Interactive Transactions

Interactive transactions in SQLite ensure the consistency of a series of read and write operations within a transaction’s scope. These transactions give you control over when to commit or roll back changes, isolating them from other client activity.

MethodDescription
execute()Similar to execute() except within the context of the transaction
commit()Commits all write statements in the transaction
rollback()Rolls back the entire transaction
close()Immediately stops the transaction
try {
  const userId = "user123";
  const withdrawalAmount = 500;

  const transaction = await client.transaction("write");

  const balanceResult = await transaction.execute({
    sql: "SELECT balance FROM accounts WHERE userId = ?",
    args: [userId],
  });

  const currentBalance = balanceResult.rows[0]["balance"] as number;

  if (currentBalance >= withdrawalAmount) {
    await transaction.execute({
      sql: "UPDATE accounts SET balance = balance - ? WHERE userId = ?",
      args: [withdrawalAmount, userId],
    });
  } else {
    console.log("Insufficient funds");
    await transaction.rollback();
    return;
  }

  await transaction.commit();
} catch (e) {
  console.error(e);
}

Interactive transactions in libSQL lock the database for writing until committed or rolled back, with a 5-second timeout. They can impact performance on high-latency or busy databases.

ATTACH

You can attach multiple databases to the current connection using the ATTACH attachment:

import { createClient } from "@libsql/client";

const client = createClient({
  url: process.env.TURSO_DATABASE_URL,
  authToken: process.env.TURSO_AUTH_TOKEN,
});

const txn = await db.transaction("read");

await txn.execute('ATTACH "<database-id>" AS attached');

const rs = await txn.execute("SELECT * FROM attached.users");

Make sure to allow ATTACH and create a token with the permission to attach a database — learn more