How to use Litestream with SQLite & Prisma

Arnav Gosain

Arnav Gosain

Published on

One of my side projects is Rune, an alternative email client built for reading and annotating newsletter content.

Rune is built with Remix1 and uses Prisma2 as the ORM layer. Prisma supports quite a few databases, of which I prefer Postgres. But I wanted to keep things simple, and didn't want to set up a full-blown Postgres instance, so I decided to use SQLite.

Since since my preferred way to deploy is via Docker on Railway.app, I needed a way to persist SQLite since Docker containers are refreshed on every deployment. Litestream3 was the perfect tool for the job.

But since Litestream only works with SQLite's WAL journaling mode4, it needs to be enabled on the SQLite database before running the Remix app.

enable-wal.js

const { PrismaClient } = require("@prisma/client");

let client = new PrismaClient();

client.$queryRaw`PRAGMA journal_mode = WAL;`
  .then(() => {
    console.log("ENABLED WAL MODE FOR DATABASE");
  })
  .catch((err) => {
    console.log("DB SETUP FAILED", err);
    process.exit(1);
  });

run.sh

#!/bin/bash

set -ex

## Restores the database from S3
litestream restore -v -config /etc/litestream.yml -if-replica-exists -o /data/db /data/db

## Runs migrations on the restored database
npx prisma migrate deploy

## Enables WAL Mode
node ./scripts/enable-wal.js

npx concurrently "litestream replicate -config /etc/litestream.yml" "npm run start"

Dockerfile

CMD ["bash", "./scripts/run.sh"]

Explanation

  1. Dockerfile runs the run.sh script.
  2. The script first restores the latest snapshot of the database from S3 using Litestream.
  3. It runs npx prisma migrate deploy to deploy any pending migrations.
  4. Then, enable-wal.js is run to enable WAL journaling mode using PrismaClient's $queryRaw
  5. Finally, the Remix app & Litestream are started concurrently using the concurrently5 CLI tool.

Footnotes

  1. https://remix.run

  2. https://prisma.io

  3. https://litestream.io

  4. https://sqlite.org/wal.html

  5. https://www.npmjs.com/package/concurrently