Basic Usage of MongoDB in a Python Application: A Step-by-Step Guide

In this article, we’ll explore the basic usage of MongoDB in a Python application.

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MongoDB is a popular NoSQL database that allows you to store and manage data in a flexible and schema-less way. It’s a perfect fit for applications where data structures evolve over time. In this article, we’ll explore the basic usage of MongoDB in a Python application. We’ll cover the steps for connecting to MongoDB, performing common database operations, and handling data using the official Python driver, PyMongo.


Before we start, make sure you have the following prerequisites in place:

  1. MongoDB: MongoDB should be installed and running. You can download it from the official MongoDB website.

  2. PyMongo: Install the PyMongo library, which is the official MongoDB driver for Python. You can install it using pip:

    pip install pymongo

Step 1: Connecting to MongoDB

To use MongoDB in a Python application, you first need to establish a connection to the database. Here’s a basic example of how to do this:

import pymongo

# Database configuration
client = pymongo.MongoClient("mongodb://localhost:27017/")

# Check if the connection was successful
if client:
    print("Connected to MongoDB")

# Select a database
db = client["mydatabase"]

Make sure to replace "mongodb://localhost:27017/" with the appropriate connection string if your MongoDB server is running on a different host or port.

Step 2: Performing Database Operations

Once connected, you can perform various database operations, such as creating collections, inserting documents, querying data, updating records, and deleting documents. Here are some examples:

Creating a Collection

In MongoDB, data is stored in collections. You can create a collection like this:

mycollection = db["mycollection"]

Inserting Documents

You can insert documents into a collection like this:

data = {
    "name": "John Doe",
    "email": "[email protected]",
    "age": 30

result = mycollection.insert_one(data)
print("Document inserted with ID:", result.inserted_id)

Querying Data

You can query data using various criteria. Here’s how to retrieve documents from a collection:

query = {"name": "John Doe"}

results = mycollection.find(query)

for doc in results:

Updating Documents

You can update documents in a collection like this:

filter_query = {"name": "John Doe"}
update_query = {"$set": {"age": 31}}

result = mycollection.update_one(filter_query, update_query)

print(result.modified_count, "document(s) updated.")

Deleting Documents

You can delete documents from a collection like this:

delete_query = {"name": "John Doe"}

result = mycollection.delete_one(delete_query)

print(result.deleted_count, "document(s) deleted.")

Step 3: Error Handling

It’s important to handle errors gracefully when working with databases. In the examples above, PyMongo provides error handling for many common database errors. You can catch and handle exceptions as needed in your application.


In this article, we’ve covered the basic usage of MongoDB in a Python application using PyMongo. You’ve learned how to connect to MongoDB, create collections, insert documents, query data, update records, and delete documents. MongoDB’s flexible and schema-less nature makes it suitable for various types of applications, from small-scale projects to large-scale, data-intensive systems. These fundamental skills will serve as a solid foundation for building more complex applications with MongoDB and Python.