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  • Overview
  • Expiration
  • Server Selection
  • Connection Checkout
  • Connection Establishment
  • Socket Read and Write

The MongoDB Go Driver uses the context package from Go's standard library to allow applications to signal timeouts and cancellations for any blocking method call. A blocking method relies on an external event, such as a network input or output, to proceed with its task.

An example of a blocking method in the Go Driver is the Insert() method. If you want to perform an insert operation on a Collection within 10 seconds, you can use a Context with a timeout. If the operation doesn't complete within the timeout, the method returns an error.

client := mongo.Connect(context.TODO())
ctx, cancel := context.WithTimeout(context.Background(), 10*time.Second)
defer cancel()
client.Database("<db>").Collection("<collection>").Insert(ctx, bson.D{{"x",1}})

The driver considers a Context expired when an operation exceeds its timeout or is canceled. The driver checks the Context expiration with the Done() method.

The following sections describe when and how the driver checks for expiration.

The driver might block a method call if it can't select a server for an operation.

In this scenario, the driver loops until it finds a server to use for the operation. After each iteration, the driver returns a server selection timeout error if the Context expired or the selection process took longer than the serverSelectionTimeoutMS setting.

To learn more about how the driver selects a server, see the Server Selection Algorithm.

The driver might block a method call if there are no available connections to check out.

After selecting a server, the driver tries to check out a connection from the server’s connection pool. If the Context expires while checking out a connection, the method returns a timeout error.

The driver might block an method call if it needs to create a new connection.

When the driver needs to create a new connection to execute an operation, the Context sets a timeout for the establishment process. The driver sets the timeout to either the Context expiration or connection timeout, whichever is shorter.

The following example sets the connection timeout to 1 second and the Context deadline to 2 seconds. Because the connection timeout is shorter, the establishment process expires after 1 second.

opts := options.Client()
client := mongo.Connect(context.TODO(), opts)
ctx, cancel := context.WithTimeout(context.Background(), 2*time.Second)
defer cancel()
client.Database("<db>").Collection("<collection>").InsertOne(ctx, bson.D{{"x",1}})

When the driver retrieves a connection for an operation, it sets the socket’s read or write deadline to either the Context deadline or socket timeout, whichever is shorter.

If you cancel the Context after the execution of the Read() or Write() method but before its deadline, the behavior of the driver differs based on version.

The driver generates a separate goroutine to listen for Context cancellation when the Read() or Write() method is in progress. If the goroutine detects a cancellation, it closes the connection. The pending Read() or Write() method returns an error which the driver overwrites with the context.Canceled error.


In versions prior to 1.5.0, the driver doesn't detect the Context cancellation and waits for the Read() or Write() method to return.

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