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Javascript-language shell around the Apache Cassandra key-value store.


  • Range/slices queries in one get() method
  • Data insertion
  • Basic metadata support
  • Supports Cassandra 0.5

What's missing:

  • Deleting data
  • Cassandra 0.6 API support
  • Batch inserts
  • Support for non-string datatypes (as best as it can)
  • Exposing the column timestamp
  • Row queries as lists to maintain key order

Getting Started

Download the latest version of the pre-built shell and run it from the command-line. It will automatically connect to a Cassandra instance on localhost:9160.

# java -jar cash-0.01.jar
cash - Cassandra shell
Use .help() for help on any object, start with "".
Connected to localhost:9160
keyspaces: [Keyspace1, system]
Rhino 1.7 release 2 2009 03 22

To connect with a remote instance, use db.connect() and pass a hostname (the port will default to 9160 if not specified):

js> db.connect('otherhost', 9160)
Connected to otherhost:9160
keyspaces: [Keyspace1, system]


Basic help is available from any object in the system:

.connect([host], [port])


You can start navigating your Cassandra store by using the global db object. A keyspace may be retrieved via a call to db.keyspace() (db.k is a shortcut for this function):

js> k = db.k('Keyspace1')
Keyspace Keyspace1
ColumnFamily(name: StandardByUUID1, type: Standard)
ColumnFamily(name: Super1, type: Super)
ColumnFamily(name: Standard2, type: Standard)
ColumnFamily(name: Standard1, type: Standard)

From a keyspace, you can then retrieve a column family via keyspace.columnFamily() ( is a shortcut for this function):

js> cf ='Super1')
ColumnFamily(name: Super1, type: Super)


You can query directly from a column family, or in the case of a super-column family, retrieve a super column via columnFamily.superColumn() ( for short) and query from there:

js> cf.get()
{ key: { super: { col: value, col2: value2 }, super2: { col: value } } }
{ key: { col: value, col2: value2 } }

The get() method on a column family or super-column takes two parameters: the key specification and the column specification. If either is omitted or null, it is inferred to mean "all keys" or "all columns".

Keys may be specified as a string, array of strings or a key range object. A key range object may specify start, end and/or count:

'key' Query for a single key
['key1', 'key2'] Query for a two keys
{start: 'start', end: 'end', count: count} Query for a key range

js> cf.get('key')
js> cf.get(['key1', 'key2'])
js> cf.get({start:'key2', end:'key1'})
js> cf.get({start:'key2', count: 100})

Columns may be specified as a string, array of strings or a column range object. A column range may specify start, end and/or count:

'col' Query for a single column
['col1', 'col2'] Query for a two columns
{start: 'start', end: 'end', count: count} Query for a column range


js> cf.get('key', 'col')
js> cf.get('key', ['col1', 'col2'])
js> cf.get('key', {start:'col1', end:'col2'})
js> cf.get('key', {start:'col1', count: 100})

You can mix and match key and column specifications as well:

NOTE: The count property of key and column ranges behaves differently (a property of Cassandra's API).

  • For keys, this specifies the number of contiguous keys to retrieve, whether or not they match the column specification. This means that a range with count = 20 could retrieve 20 empty rows if none of them match the column specification.
  • For columns, this specifies the maximum number of matching columns to retrieve per key. This means that a range with count = 20 could retrieve different sets of columns per row.
js> cf.get(['key1', 'key2'], ['col1', 'col2'])
js> cf.get({start:'key2', end:'key1'}, {start:'col1', end:'col2'})


You can insert into a column family or super-column using the insert function. insert() must be called from the correct type of object depending on the type of column family:

js> db.k('Keyspace1').cf('Standard1').insert('key5', 'col1', 'value')
js> db.k('Keyspace1').cf('Standard1').get('key5')
{ key5: { col1: value } }
js> db.k('Keyspace1').cf('Super1').sc('super').insert('key10', 'col1', 'value')
js> db.k('Keyspace1').cf('Super1').sc('super').get('key10')
{ key10: { col1: value } }


The source is licensed under the Apache License 2.0. Feel free to fork, steal, crib or mangle as needed.

The shell is implemented as a single JS file, db.js, which is bootstrapped into a Rhino shell.

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