Connecting DynamoDB to Redshift – 2 Easy Methods

on Engineering, Data Warehouse, Database, ETL • August 6th, 2021 • Write for Hevo

DynamoDB is Amazon’s document-oriented, high-performance, NoSQL Database. Given it is a NoSQL Database, it is hard to run SQL queries to analyze the data. It is essential to move data from DynamoDB to Redshift, convert it into a relational format for seamless analysis.

This article will give you a comprehensive guide to set up DynamoDB to Redshift Integration. It will also provide you with a brief introduction to DynamoDB and Redshift. You will also explore 2 methods to Integrate DynamoDB and Redshift in the further sections. Let’s get started.

Table of Contents

Prerequisites

You will have a much easier time understanding the ways for setting up DynamoDB to Redshift Integration if you have gone through the following aspects:

  • An active AWS (Amazon Web Service) account.
  • Working knowledge of Database and Data Warehouse.
  • A clear idea regarding the type of data is to be transferred.
  • Working knowledge of Amazon DynamoDB and Amazon Redshift would be an added advantage.

Introduction to Amazon DynamoDB

Amazon DynamoDB Logo
Image Source

Fully managed by Amazon, DynamoDB is a NoSQL database service that provides high-speed and highly scalable performance. DynamoDB can handle around 20 million requests per second. Its serverless architecture and on-demand scalability make it a solution that is widely preferred.

To know more about Amazon DynamoDB, visit this link.

Introduction to Amazon Redshift

Amazon Redshift Logo
Image Source

A widely used Data Warehouse, Amazon Redshift is an enterprise-class RDBMS. Amazon Redshift provides a high-performance MPP, columnar storage set up, highly efficient targeted data compression encoding schemes, making it a natural choice for Data Warehousing and analytical needs.

Amazon Redshift has excellent business intelligence abilities and a robust SQL-based interface. Amazon Redshift allows you to perform complex data analysis queries, complex joins with other tables in your AWS Redshift cluster and queries can be used in any reporting application to create dashboards or reports.

To know more about Amazon Redshift, visit this link.

Methods to Set up DynamoDB to Redshift Integration

Method 1: Using Copy Utility to Manually Set up DynamoDB to Redshift Integration

This method involves the use of COPY utility to set up DynamoDB to Redshift Integration. This process of writing custom code to perform DynamoDB to Redshift replication is tedious and needs a whole bunch of precious engineering resources invested in this. As your data grows, the complexities will grow too, making it necessary to invest resources on an ongoing basis for monitoring and maintenance.  

Method 2: Using Hevo Data to Set up DynamoDB to Redshift Integration

Hevo Data is an automated Data Pipeline platform that can move your data from Optimizely to MySQL very quickly without writing a single line of code. It is simple, hassle-free, and reliable.

Moreover, Hevo offers a fully-managed solution to set up data integration from 100+ data sources (including 30+ free data sources) and will let you directly load data to a Data Warehouse such as Snowflake, Amazon Redshift, Google BigQuery, etc. or the destination of your choice. It will automate your data flow in minutes without writing any line of code. Its Fault-Tolerant architecture makes sure that your data is secure and consistent. Hevo provides you with a truly efficient and fully automated solution to manage data in real-time and always have analysis-ready data.

Get Started with Hevo for Free

Methods to Set up DynamoDb to Redshift Integration

This article delves into both the manual and using Hevo methods in depth. You will also see some of the pros and cons of these approaches and would be able to pick the best method based on your use case. Below are the two methods:

Method 1: Using Copy Utility to Manually Set up DynamoDB to Redshift Integration

As a prerequisite, you must have a table created in Amazon Redshift before loading data from the DynamoDB table to Redshift. As we are copying data from NoSQL DB to RDBMS, we need to apply some changes/transformations before loading it to the target database. For example, some of the DynamoDB data types do not correspond directly to those of Amazon Redshift. While loading, one should ensure that each column in the Redshift table is mapped to the correct data type and size. Below is the step-by-step procedure to set up DynamoDB to Redshift Integration.

Step 1: Before you migrate data from DynamoDB to Redshift create a table in Redshift using the following command as shown by the image below.

Creating Table in Amazon Redshift
Image Source: Self

Step 2: Create a table in DynamoDB by logging into the AWS console as shown below.

Creating Table in Amazon DynamoDB
Image Source: Self

Step 3: Add data into DynamoDB Table by clicking on Create Item.

Step 4: Use the COPY command to copy data from DynamoDB to Redshift in the Employee table as shown below.

copy emp.emp from 'dynamodb://Employee' iam_role 'IAM_Role' readratio 10; 
Using COPY Command to Copy Data From DynamoDB to Redshift
Image Source: Self

Step 5: Verify that data got copied successfully.

Verification of Copied Data
Image Source: Self

Limitations of using Copy Utility to Manually Set up DynamoDB to Redshift Integration

There are a handful of limitations while performing ETL from DynamoDB to Redshift using the Copy utility. Read the following:

  1. DynamoDB table names can contain up to 255 characters, including ‘.’ (dot) and ‘-‘ (dash) characters, and are case-sensitive. However, Amazon Redshift table names are limited to 127 characters, cannot include dots or dashes, and are not case-sensitive. Also, we cannot use Amazon Redshift reserved words.
  2. Unlike SQL Databases, DynamoDB does not support NULL. Interpretation of empty or blank attribute values in DynamoDB should be specified to Redshift. In Redshift, these can be treated as either NULLs or empty fields.
  3. Following data parameters are not supported along with COPY from DynamoDB:
    • FILLRECORD
    • ESCAPE
    • IGNOREBLANKLINES
    • IGNOREHEADER
    • NULL
    • REMOVEQUOTES
    • ACCEPTINVCHARS
    • MANIFEST
    • ENCRYPT

However, apart from the above-mentioned limitations, the COPY command leverages Redshift’s massively parallel processing(MPP) architecture to read and stream data in parallel from an Amazon DynamoDB table. By leveraging Redshift distribution keys, you can make the best out of Redshift’s parallel processing architecture.

Method 2: Using Hevo Data to Set up DynamoDB to Redshift Integration

Hevo Banner
Image Source

Hevo Data, a No-code Data Pipeline, helps you directly transfer data from Amazon DynamoDB and 100+ other data sources to Data Warehouses such as Amazon Redshift, Databases, BI tools, or a destination of your choice in a completely hassle-free & automated manner. Hevo is fully managed and completely automates the process of not only loading data from your desired source but also enriching the data and transforming it into an analysis-ready form without having to write a single line of code. Its fault-tolerant architecture ensures that the data is handled in a secure, consistent manner with zero data loss.

Hevo Data takes care of all your data preprocessing needs and lets you focus on key business activities and draw a much powerful insight on how to generate more leads, retain customers, and take your business to new heights of profitability. It provides a consistent & reliable solution to manage data in real-time and always have analysis-ready data in your desired destination.

Loading data into Amazon Redshift using Hevo is easier, reliable, and fast. Hevo is a no-code automated data pipeline platform that solves all the challenges described above. You move data from DynamoDB to Redshift in the following two steps without writing any piece of code. 

  • Authenticate Data Source: Authenticate and connect your Amazon DynamoDB account as a Data Source.
Configuring Amazon DynamoDB as Source in Hevo Data Pipeline
Image Source

To get more details about Authenticating Amazon DynamoDB with Hevo Data visit here.

  • Configure your Destination: Configure your Amazon Redshift account as the destination.
Configuring Amazon Redshift as Destination in Hevo Data Pipeline
Image Source

To get more details about Configuring Redshift with Hevo Data visit this link.

You now have a real-time pipeline for syncing data from DynamoDB to Redshift.

Sign up here for a 14-Day Free Trial!

Here are more reasons to try Hevo:

  • Secure: Hevo has a fault-tolerant architecture that ensures that the data is handled in a secure, consistent manner with zero data loss.
  • Schema Management: Hevo takes away the tedious task of schema management & automatically detects the schema of incoming data and maps it to the destination schema.
  • Minimal Learning: Hevo, with its simple and interactive UI, is extremely simple for new customers to work on and perform operations.
  • Hevo Is Built To Scale: As the number of sources and the volume of your data grows, Hevo scales horizontally, handling millions of records per minute with very little latency.
  • Incremental Data Load: Hevo allows the transfer of data that has been modified in real-time. This ensures efficient utilization of bandwidth on both ends.
  • Live Support: The Hevo team is available round the clock to extend exceptional support to its customers through chat, email, and support calls.
  • Live Monitoring: Hevo allows you to monitor the data flow and check where your data is at a particular point in time.

Conclusion

The process of writing custom code to perform DynamoDB to Redshift replication is tedious and needs a whole bunch of precious engineering resources invested in this. As your data grows, the complexities will grow too, making it necessary to invest resources on an ongoing basis for monitoring and maintenance. Hevo handles all the aforementioned limitations automatically, thereby drastically reducing the effort that you and your team will have to put in.

Visit our Website to Explore Hevo

Businesses can use automated platforms like Hevo Data to set this integration and handle the ETL process. It helps you directly transfer data from a source of your choice to a Data Warehouse, Business Intelligence tools, or any other desired destination in a fully automated and secure manner without having to write any code and will provide you a hassle-free experience.

Want to take Hevo for a spin? Sign Up for a 14-day free trial and experience the feature-rich Hevo suite first hand. You can also have a look at the unbeatable pricing that will help you choose the right plan for your business needs.

Share your experience of setting up DynamoDB to Redshift Integration in the comments section below!

No-code Data Pipeline for Redshift