Redis / Redis Commands

Let's store our product sales in a key:

Redis::set('product:1:sales', 1000)
Redis::set('product:1:count', 10)

Now to read it we use:


Incrementing and Decrementing counters

A new purchase was made, let's increment the sales:

Redis::incrby('product:1:sales', 100)


Here we increment the sales key by 100, and increment the count key by 1.

We can also decrement in the same way:

Redis::decrby('product:1:sales', 100)


But when it comes to dealing with floating point numbers we need to use a special command:

Redis::incrbyfloat('product:1:sales', 15.5)

Redis::incrbyfloat('product:1:sales', - 30.2)

There's no decrbyfloat command, but we can pass a negative value to the incrbyfloat command to have the same effect.

The incrby, incr, decrby, decr, and incrbyfloat return the value after the operation as a response

Retrieve and update

Now we want to read the latest sales number and reset the counters to zero, maybe we do that at the end of each day:

$value = Redis::getset('product:1:sales', 0)

Here $value will hold the 1000 value, if we read the value of that key after this operation it'll be 0.

Keys Expiration

Let's say we want to send a notification to the owner when inventory is low, but we only want to send that notification once every 1 hour instead of sending it every time a new purchase is made, so maybe we set a flag once and only send the notification when that flag doesn't exist:

Redis::set('user:1:notified', 1, 'EX', 3600);

Now this key will expire after 3600 seconds (1 hour), we can check if the key exists before attempting to set it and send the notification:


Redis::set('user:1:notified', 1, 'EX', 3600);


Notice: There's no guarantee that the value of user:1:notified won't change between the get and set operations, we'll discuss atomic command groups later, but this example is enough for you to understand how every individual command works.

We can set the expiration of a key in milliseconds as well using:

Redis::set('user:1:notified', 1, 'PX', 3600);

And you may also use the expire command and provide the timeout in seconds:

Redis::expire('user:1:notified', 3600);

Or in milliseconds:

Redis::pexpire('user:1:notified', 3600);

And if you want the keys to expire at a specific time you can use expireat and provide a Unix timestamp:

Redis::expireat('user:1:notified', '1495469730')

Is there a way I can check when a key should expire?

You can use the ttl command (Time To Live), which will return the number of seconds remaining until the key expires.


That command may return -2 if the key doesn't exist, or -1 if the key has no expiration set.

You can also use the pttl command to get the TTL in milliseconds.

What if I want to cancel expiration?


This will remove the expiration from your key, it'll return 1 if OK or 0 if key doesn't exist or originally had no expiration set.

Keys Existence

Let's say there's only 1 laracon ticket available and we need to close purchasing once that ticket is sold, we can do:

Redis::set('ticket:sold', $user->id, 'NX')

This will only set the key if it doesn't exist, the next script that tries to set the key wll receive null as a response from Redis which means that the key wasn't set.

You can also instruct Redis to set the key only if it exists:

Redis::set('ticket:sold', $user->id, 'XX')

If you want to simply check if a key exists, you can use the exists command:


Reading multiple keys in one go

Sometimes you might need to read multiple keys in one go, you can do this:

Redis::mget('product:1:sales', 'product:2:sales', 'non_existing_key')

The response of this command is an array with the same size of the given keys, if a key doesn't exist its value is going to be null.

As we discussed before, Redis executes individual command atomically, that means nothing can change the value of any in the keys once the operation started, so it's guaranteed that the values returned are not altered in between reading the value of the first key and the last key.

Using mget is better that firing multiple get commands to reduce the RTT (round trip time), which is the time each individual command takes to travel from client to the server and then carry the response back to the client. More on that later.

Deleting Keys

You can also delete multiple keys at once using the del command:

Redis::del('previous:sales', 'previous:return');

Renaming Keys

You can rename a key using the rename command:

Redis::rename('current:sales', 'previous:sales');

An error is returned if the original key doesn't exist, and it overrides the second key if it already exists.

Renaming keys is usually a fast operation unless a key with the desired name exists, in that case Redis will try to delete that existing key first before renaming this one, deleting a key that holds a very big value might be a bit slow.

So I have to check first if the second key exists to prevent overriding?

Yeah you can use exists to check if the second key exists... OR:

Redis::renamenx('current:sales', 'previous:sales');

This will check first if the second key exists, if yes it just returns 0 without doing anything, so it only renames the key if the second key does not exist.

Continue to "String Manipulation Commands"

I'm Mohamed Said, a web developer from Hurghada-Egypt. I work with the laravel core team trying to deliver the best developer experience.
Find me as @themsaid

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