Getting Last Update Time in Redis using Python (Detailed Guide w/ Code Examples)

Use Case(s)

The last update time in Redis is often required when it comes to synchronization or cache invalidation. This information can help in understanding when a key-value pair was last modified and hence, whether the data is stale or not.

Code Examples

Please note that Redis itself does not provide direct commands to fetch the last update time of a key. However, we can maintain this information ourselves within our Python code. Here is how you might do this:

Example 1: Manual tracking of last update time

import redis from datetime import datetime r = redis.Redis(host='localhost', port=6379, db=0) def set_key(key, value): r.set(key, value) r.set(f'{key}_last_updated', def get_last_update(key): return r.get(f'{key}_last_updated')

In this example, every time a key is set, another key with the same name appended by _last_updated is also set with the current timestamp. To get the last updated time, simply fetch this key.

Best Practices

  • Using an appropriate naming scheme for your keys will make it easier to correlate keys with their last updated timestamp keys.
  • Ensure proper error handling around the Redis calls as network issues or Redis server issues could lead to exceptions.

Common Mistakes

  • A common mistake is forgetting to set the 'last update' time whenever updating a key. Make sure that the timestamp is updated every time the corresponding data is changed.


  • Does Redis provide a built-in feature for this? No, Redis does not have a built-in feature to get the last update time of a key. It needs to be manually tracked.

  • What happens when setting a non-existent timestamp key? If you try to retrieve a non-existent timestamp key, Redis will return None.

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