Automatically remove referencing objects on deletion in MongoDB


Let's suppose I have a schema like this:

var Person = new Schema({
    name: String

var Assignment = new Schema({
    name: String,
    person: ObjectID

If I delete a person, there can still be orphaned assignments left that reference a person that does not exist, which creates extraneous clutter in the database.

Is there a simple way to ensure that when a person is deleted, all corresponding references to that person will also be deleted?

8/10/2012 2:50:25 PM

Accepted Answer

You can add your own 'remove' Mongoose middleware on the Person schema to remove that person from all other documents that reference it. In your middleware function, this is the Person document that's being removed.

Person.pre('remove', function(next) {
    // Remove all the assignment docs that reference the removed person.
    this.model('Assignment').remove({ person: this._id }, next);
10/13/2015 12:50:33 PM

If by "simple" you mean "built-in", then no. MongoDB is not a relational database after all. You need to implement your own cleaning mechanism.

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