Using dbt with Amazon MWAA - Amazon Managed Workflows for Apache Airflow
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Using dbt with Amazon MWAA

This topic demonstrates how you can use dbt and Postgres with Amazon MWAA. In the following steps, you'll add the required dependencies to your requirements.txt, and upload a sample dbt project to your environment's Amazon S3 bucket. Then, you'll use a sample DAG to verify that Amazon MWAA has installed the dependencies, and finally use the BashOperator to run the dbt project.


  • You can use the code example on this page with Apache Airflow v2 and above in Python 3.10.


Before you can complete the following steps, you'll need the following:

  • An Amazon MWAA environment using Apache Airflow v2.2.2. This sample was written, and tested with v2.2.2. You might need to modify the sample to use with other Apache Airflow versions.

  • A sample dbt project. To get started using dbt with Amazon MWAA, you can create a fork and clone the dbt starter project from the dbt-labs GitHub repository.


To use Amazon MWAA with dbt, add the following dependency to your requirements.txt. To learn more, see Installing Python dependencies

When your environment completes updating, Amazon MWAA will install the required dbt libraries and additional dependencies, such as psycopg2.


The default constraints file provided with Apache Airflow v2.2.2 has a conflicting version of jsonschema that is not supported by the version of dbt used in this guide. As such, when using Amazon MWAA with dbt, you can either download and modify the Apache Airflow constraints file into your Amazon S3 DAGs folder, then reference it in your requirements.txt file as --constraint /usr/local/airflow/dags/my-updated-constraint.txt, or omit --constraint from requirements.txt as shown in the following.

json-rpc==1.13.0 minimal-snowplow-tracker==0.0.2 packaging==20.9 networkx==2.6.3 mashumaro==2.5 sqlparse==0.4.2 logbook==1.5.3 agate==1.6.1 dbt-extractor==0.4.0 pyparsing==2.4.7 msgpack==1.0.2 parsedatetime==2.6 pytimeparse==1.1.8 leather==0.3.4 pyyaml==5.4.1 # Airflow constraints are jsonschema==3.2.0 jsonschema==3.1.1 hologram==0.0.14 dbt-core==0.21.1 psycopg2-binary==2.8.6 dbt-postgres==0.21.1 dbt-redshift==0.21.1

In the following sections, you'll upload your dbt project directory to Amazon S3 and run a DAG that validates whether Amazon MWAA has successfully installed the required dbt dependencies.

Upload a dbt project to Amazon S3

To be able to use a dbt project with your Amazon MWAA environment, you can upload the entire project directory to your environment's dags folder. When the environment updates, Amazon MWAA downloads the dbt directory to the local usr/local/airflow/dags/ folder.

To upload a dbt project to Amazon S3
  1. Navigate to the directory where you cloned the dbt starter project.

  2. Run the following Amazon S3 Amazon CLI command to recursively copy the content of the project to your environment's dags folder using the --recursive parameter. The command creates a sub-directory called dbt that you can use for all of your dbt projects. If the sub-directory already exists, the project files are copied into the existing directory, and a new directory is not created. The command also creates a sub-directory within the dbt directory for this specific starter project.

    $ aws s3 cp dbt-starter-project s3://mwaa-bucket/dags/dbt/dbt-starter-project --recursive

    You can use different names for project sub-directories to organize multiple dbt projects within the parent dbt directory.

Use a DAG to verify dbt dependency installation

The following DAG uses a BashOperator and a bash command to verify whether Amazon MWAA has successfully installed the dbt dependencies specified in requirements.txt.

from airflow import DAG from airflow.operators.bash_operator import BashOperator from airflow.utils.dates import days_ago with DAG(dag_id="dbt-installation-test", schedule_interval=None, catchup=False, start_date=days_ago(1)) as dag: cli_command = BashOperator( task_id="bash_command", bash_command="/usr/local/airflow/.local/bin/dbt --version" )

Do the following to view task logs and verify that dbt and its dependencies have been installed.

  1. Navigate to the Amazon MWAA console, then choose Open Airflow UI from the list of available environments.

  2. On the Apache Airflow UI, find the dbt-installation-test DAG from the list, then choose the date under the Last Run column to open the last successful task.

  3. Using Graph View, choose the bash_command task to open the task instance details.

  4. Choose Log to open the task logs, then verify that the logs successfully list the dbt version we specified in requirements.txt.

Use a DAG to run a dbt project

The following DAG uses a BashOperator to copy the dbt projects you uploaded to Amazon S3 from the local usr/local/airflow/dags/ directory to the write-accessible /tmp directory, then runs the dbt project. The bash commands assume a starter dbt project titled dbt-starter-project. Modify the directory name according to the name of your project directory.

from airflow import DAG from airflow.operators.bash_operator import BashOperator from airflow.utils.dates import days_ago import os DAG_ID = os.path.basename(__file__).replace(".py", "") with DAG(dag_id=DAG_ID, schedule_interval=None, catchup=False, start_date=days_ago(1)) as dag: cli_command = BashOperator( task_id="bash_command", bash_command="cp -R /usr/local/airflow/dags/dbt /tmp;\ cd /tmp/dbt/dbt-starter-project;\ /usr/local/airflow/.local/bin/dbt run --project-dir /tmp/dbt/dbt-starter-project/ --profiles-dir ..;\ cat /tmp/dbt_logs/dbt.log" )