Amazon DynamoDB
Developer Guide (API Version 2012-08-10)

Step 2: Load Sample Data

In this step, you populate the Movies table with sample data.

This scenario uses a sample data file that contains information about a few thousand movies from the Internet Movie Database (IMDb).

The movie data is encoded as JSON. For each movie, the JSON defines a year name-value pair, a title name-value pair, and a complex info object, as shown in the following example:

{ "year" : 2013, "title" : "Turn It Down, Or Else!", "info" : { "directors" : [ "Alice Smith", "Bob Jones" ], "release_date" : "2013-01-18T00:00:00Z", "rating" : 6.2, "genres" : [ "Comedy", "Drama" ], "image_url" : "", "plot" : "A rock band plays their music at high volumes, annoying the neighbors.", "rank" : 11, "running_time_secs" : 5215, "actors" : [ "David Matthewman", "Ann Thomas", "Jonathan G. Neff" ] } }

Step 2.1: Download the Sample Data File

  1. Download the sample data archive:

  2. Extract the data file (moviedata.json) from the archive.

  3. Copy and paste themoviedata.json file into the bin/Debug folder of your DynamoDB_intro Visual Studio project.

Step 2.2: Load the Sample Data into the Movies Table

Build a program that loads movie data into the table you created in Step 1.

  1. This program uses the open source Newtonsoft Json.NET library for deserializing JSON data, licensed under the MIT License (MIT) (see

    To load the Json.NET library into your project, in Visual Studio, open the NuGet Package Manager Console from the Tools menu. Then type the following command at the PM> prompt:

    PM> Install-Package Newtonsoft.Json
  2. Copy and paste the following program into the Program.cs file, replacing its current contents:

    using System; using System.Collections.Generic; using System.IO; using System.Linq; using System.Text; using Amazon; using Amazon.DynamoDBv2; using Amazon.DynamoDBv2.Model; using Amazon.DynamoDBv2.DocumentModel; using Newtonsoft; using Newtonsoft.Json; using Newtonsoft.Json.Linq; namespace DynamoDB_intro { class Program { public static Table GetTableObject(string tableName) { // First, set up a DynamoDB client for DynamoDB Local AmazonDynamoDBConfig ddbConfig = new AmazonDynamoDBConfig(); ddbConfig.ServiceURL = "http://localhost:8000"; AmazonDynamoDBClient client; try { client = new AmazonDynamoDBClient(ddbConfig); } catch (Exception ex) { Console.WriteLine("\n Error: failed to create a DynamoDB client; " + ex.Message); return (null); } // Now, create a Table object for the specified table Table table; try { table = Table.LoadTable(client, tableName); } catch (Exception ex) { Console.WriteLine("\n Error: failed to load the 'Movies' table; " + ex.Message); return (null); } return (table); } public static void Main(string[] args) { // First, read in the JSON data from the moviedate.json file StreamReader sr = null; JsonTextReader jtr = null; JArray movieArray = null; try { sr = new StreamReader("moviedata.json"); jtr = new JsonTextReader(sr); movieArray = (JArray)JToken.ReadFrom(jtr); } catch (Exception ex) { Console.WriteLine("\n Error: could not read from the 'moviedata.json' file, because: " + ex.Message); PauseForDebugWindow(); return; } finally { if (jtr != null) jtr.Close(); if (sr != null) sr.Close(); } // Get a Table object for the table that you created in Step 1 Table table = GetTableObject("Movies"); if (table == null) { PauseForDebugWindow(); return; } // Load the movie data into the table (this could take some time) Console.Write("\n Now writing {0:#,##0} movie records from moviedata.json (might take 15 minutes)...\n ...completed: ", movieArray.Count); for (int i = 0, j = 99; i < movieArray.Count; i++) { try { string itemJson = movieArray[i].ToString(); Document doc = Document.FromJson(itemJson); table.PutItem(doc); } catch (Exception ex) { Console.WriteLine("\nError: Could not write the movie record #{0:#,##0}, because {1}", i, ex.Message); PauseForDebugWindow(); return; } if (i >= j) { j++; Console.Write("{0,5:#,##0}, ", j); if (j % 1000 == 0) Console.Write("\n "); j += 99; } } Console.WriteLine("\n Finished writing all movie records to DynamoDB!"); PauseForDebugWindow(); } public static void PauseForDebugWindow() { // Keep the console open if in Debug mode... Console.Write("\n\n ...Press any key to continue"); Console.ReadKey(); Console.WriteLine(); } } }
  3. Now compile the project, leaving it in Debug mode, and run it.