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Import a SQL Database to MongoDB in 5 Steps

In this tutorial, we’ll show you the quickest way to import an entire SQL database to MongoDB using Studio 3T and its new SQL Migration feature.

Want to watch instead? Skip to the video tutorial.

What you need

  1. Sign up for Studio 3T’s free 30-day trial to access SQL Migration.
  2. Get your SQL database connection details ready. We’ll use MySQL in this tutorial but SQL Server, PostgreSQL, and Oracle are also supported.

To illustrate a simple SQL database import, we’ll use the publicly available world database (download it here) which contains three tables:

  • city
  • country
  • countrylanguage

We’ll import each SQL table to a MongoDB collection, which means we should have three new collections in our target database.

1 – Open SQL Migration

Click on SQL Migration > SQL to MongoDB Migration in the toolbar.

SQL to MongoDB Migration

2 – Choose the source SQL connection

Click on Click here to connect to a server to open SQL Connection Manager.

Open a saved connection

If you’ve already saved a connection, choose your source SQL connection from the list.

Open SQL Connection Manager

Create a new connection

To create a new SQL connection, click on New Connection, enter the connection details under the Server and SSH tabs, and click Save.

new connection

3 – Choose your target MongoDB connection

Like Step 2, click on Click here to connect to a server to choose an existing MongoDB connection or to create a new one.

Here we’ll choose S3T as our target connection. This is where the three collections will be created.

S3T connection

4 – Choose SQL source tables

Studio 3T calls them “import units”, but an import unit simply means the SQL source table.

Click on Add import units.

We’ll choose the three world tables – city, country, and countrylanguage – to create a collection for each. By default, Studio 3T will map each table to a collection with the same name.

Click OK. All three tables should appear in the Overview.

All SQL source tables should then appear in the Overview tab

5 – Run the SQL import

It’s time to run the SQL import. Click on Run Migration.

Click on Run Migration in the toolbar

Track your import in the Operations window on the bottom-left hand side.

Track operations and double-check the MongoDB collections

Double-check that the world database was imported in the Connection Tree (top-left).

And finally, double-click on a collection (like country, highlighted above) to check if the data looks correct (and it does!)

Next steps

The world database is quite simple – requiring no one-to-one or one-to-many table relationships – so the default mappings are sufficient for this import.

Note, however, that SQL Migration lets you fully control these mappings. Read our tutorial on how to merge multiple SQL tables into one MongoDB collection to find out how you can use SQL Migration to do more complex imports.

Explore the full SQL to MongoDB Migration documentation here, or check out the Import Wizard to discover more import options in Studio 3T.

Video tutorial

Updated on November 16, 2020

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