DynamoDB Streams and Time to Live - Amazon DynamoDB
Services or capabilities described in Amazon Web Services documentation might vary by Region. To see the differences applicable to the China Regions, see Getting Started with Amazon Web Services in China.

DynamoDB Streams and Time to Live

You can back up, or otherwise process, items that are deleted by Time to Live (TTL) by enabling Amazon DynamoDB Streams on the table and processing the streams records of the expired items.

The streams record contains a user identity field Records[<index>].userIdentity.

Items that are deleted by the Time to Live process after expiration have the following fields:

  • Records[<index>].userIdentity.type

    "Service"

  • Records[<index>].userIdentity.principalId

    "dynamodb.amazonaws.com"

The following JSON shows the relevant portion of a single streams record.

"Records": [ { ... "userIdentity": { "type": "Service", "principalId": "dynamodb.amazonaws.com" } ... } ]

Using DynamoDB Streams and Lambda to archive TTL deleted items

Combining DynamoDB Time to Live (TTL), DynamoDB Streams, and Amazon Lambda can help simplify archiving data, reduce DynamoDB storage costs, and reduce code complexity. Using Lambda as the stream consumer provides many advantages, most notably the cost reduction compared to other consumers such as Kinesis Client Library (KCL). You aren’t charged for GetRecords API calls on your DynamoDB stream when using Lambda to consume events, and Lambda can provide event filtering by identifying JSON patterns in a stream event. With event-pattern content filtering, you can define up to five different filters to control which events are sent to Lambda for processing. This helps reduce invocations of your Lambda functions, simplifies code, and reduces overall cost.

While DynamoDB Streams contains all data modifications, such as Create, Modify, and Remove actions, this can result in unwanted invocations of your archive Lambda function. For example, say you have a table with 2 million data modifications per hour flowing into the stream, but less than 5 percent of these are item deletes that will expire through the TTL process and need to be archived. With Lambda event source filters, the Lambda function will only invoke 100,000 times per hour. The result with event filtering is that you’re charged only for the needed invocations instead of the 2 million invocations you would have without event filtering.

Event filtering is applied to the Lambda event source mapping, which is a resource that reads from a chosen event—the DynamoDB stream—and invokes a Lambda function. In the following diagram, you can see how a Time to Live deleted item is consumed by a Lambda function using streams and event filters.

DynamoDB Time to Live event filter pattern

Adding the following JSON to your event source mapping filter criteria allows invocation of your Lambda function only for TTL deleted items:

{ "Filters": [ { "Pattern": { "userIdentity": { "type": ["Service"], "principalId": ["dynamodb.amazonaws.com"] } } } ] }

Create an Amazon Lambda event source mapping

Use the following code snippets to create a filtered event source mapping which you can connect to a table's DynamoDB stream. Each code block includes the event filter pattern.

Amazon CLI
aws lambda create-event-source-mapping \ --event-source-arn 'arn:aws:dynamodb:eu-west-1:012345678910:table/test/stream/2021-12-10T00:00:00.000' \ --batch-size 10 \ --enabled \ --function-name test_func \ --starting-position LATEST \ --filter-criteria '{"Filters": [{"Pattern": "{\"userIdentity\":{\"type\":[\"Service\"],\"principalId\":[\"dynamodb.amazonaws.com\"]}}"}]}'
Java
LambdaClient client = LambdaClient.builder() .region(Region.EU_WEST_1) .build(); Filter userIdentity = Filter.builder() .pattern("{\"userIdentity\":{\"type\":[\"Service\"],\"principalId\":[\"dynamodb.amazonaws.com\"]}}") .build(); FilterCriteria filterCriteria = FilterCriteria.builder() .filters(userIdentity) .build(); CreateEventSourceMappingRequest mappingRequest = CreateEventSourceMappingRequest.builder() .eventSourceArn("arn:aws:dynamodb:eu-west-1:012345678910:table/test/stream/2021-12-10T00:00:00.000") .batchSize(10) .enabled(Boolean.TRUE) .functionName("test_func") .startingPosition("LATEST") .filterCriteria(filterCriteria) .build(); try{ CreateEventSourceMappingResponse eventSourceMappingResponse = client.createEventSourceMapping(mappingRequest); System.out.println("The mapping ARN is "+eventSourceMappingResponse.eventSourceArn()); }catch (ServiceException e){ System.out.println(e.getMessage()); }
Node
const client = new LambdaClient({ region: "eu-west-1" }); const input = { EventSourceArn: "arn:aws:dynamodb:eu-west-1:012345678910:table/test/stream/2021-12-10T00:00:00.000", BatchSize: 10, Enabled: true, FunctionName: "test_func", StartingPosition: "LATEST", FilterCriteria: { "Filters": [{ "Pattern": "{\"userIdentity\":{\"type\":[\"Service\"],\"principalId\":[\"dynamodb.amazonaws.com\"]}}" }] } } const command = new CreateEventSourceMappingCommand(input); try { const results = await client.send(command); console.log(results); } catch (err) { console.error(err); }
Python
session = boto3.session.Session(region_name = 'eu-west-1') client = session.client('lambda') try: response = client.create_event_source_mapping( EventSourceArn='arn:aws:dynamodb:eu-west-1:012345678910:table/test/stream/2021-12-10T00:00:00.000', BatchSize=10, Enabled=True, FunctionName='test_func', StartingPosition='LATEST', FilterCriteria={ 'Filters': [ { 'Pattern': "{\"userIdentity\":{\"type\":[\"Service\"],\"principalId\":[\"dynamodb.amazonaws.com\"]}}" }, ] } ) print(response) except Exception as e: print(e)
JSON
{ "userIdentity": { "type": ["Service"], "principalId": ["dynamodb.amazonaws.com"] } }