Prisma provides a database client and migration tool for TypeScript and Node.js. You can use this to access and perform migrations on your databases.

This guide will show how to connect to via Prisma. It largely follows this guide on the Prisma website, but includes some modifications for working with

Getting Started and Configuration

First, make sure you have Node.js installed on your machine. Next, create and navigate into a project directory, initialize a TypeScript project, and add the Prisma CLI as a dependency:

mkdir bitdotio-prisma
cd bitdotio-prisma

# initialize project and specify dependency
npm init -y
npm install prisma typescript ts-node @types/node --save-dev

Next, create a tsconfig.json file with the following:

  "compilerOptions": {
    "sourceMap": true,
    "outDir": "dist",
    "strict": true,
    "lib": ["esnext"],
    "esModuleInterop": true

Next, initialize the Prisma project with:

npx prisma init

npx prisma invokes the Prisma CLI.

At this point, we can connect to our database.

Connecting to with Prisma

We will follow the instructions in the Prisma documentation with some modifications.

npx prisma init creatd a directory called prisma with a file called schema.prisma. We want to update the datasource section with our database string. You can find the database string (and all other necessary connection details) in the Connect Tab on your database page.

Note that you will need to modify your database name. It is usually formatted as username/dbname; you must substitute / with ..


Replace / with . in the database name in your connection string

For example, if your connection string looks like this:


You should update such that it looks like this:


We changed bitdotio/prisma_example to bitdotio.prisma_example

Furthermore, note that we need two databases, not just one. If you only have one database, create another on with the "+New DB" button and include its connection string value as indicated below. This "shadow database" is used in a number of migration-related operations conducted by Prisma.

datasource db {
  provider = "postgresql"
  url      = "<BITDOTIO_PG_STRING>"
  shadowDatabaseUrl = "<BITDOTIO_PG_STRING_2>"


Using Prisma Migrate with

We will continue to follow the Prisma docs and show how to use our connection to conduct a migration with Prisma.

First, we add the following to our schema.prisma file:

model Post {
  id        Int      @id @default(autoincrement())
  createdAt DateTime @default(now())
  updatedAt DateTime @updatedAt
  title     String   @db.VarChar(255)
  content   String?
  published Boolean  @default(false)
  author    User     @relation(fields: [authorId], references: [id])
  authorId  Int

model Profile {
  id     Int     @id @default(autoincrement())
  bio    String?
  user   User    @relation(fields: [userId], references: [id])
  userId Int     @unique

model User {
  id      Int      @id @default(autoincrement())
  email   String   @unique
  name    String?
  posts   Post[]
  profile Profile?

Next, we run the actual migration:

npx prisma migrate dev --name init

At this point, our database (the primary database, not the shadow database) has the tables and columns specified in the schema.

You can do much more with Prisma. To get started with Prisma Client, for example, read along with this guide. For far more guides on using Prisma to work with databases, read here.

What’s Next