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Syntax: { field: { $nin: [ <value1>, <value2> ... <valueN> ]} }

$nin selects the documents where:

  • the field value is not in the specified array or
  • the field does not exist.

For comparison of different BSON type values, see the specified BSON comparison order.

Consider the following query:

db.inventory.find( { qty: { $nin: [ 5, 15 ] } } )

This query will select all documents in the inventory collection where the qty field value does not equal 5 nor 15. The selected documents will include those documents that do not contain the qty field.

If the field holds an array, then the $nin operator selects the documents whose field holds an array with no element equal to a value in the specified array (e.g. <value1>, <value2>, etc.).

Consider the following query:

db.inventory.update( { tags: { $nin: [ "appliances", "school" ] } }, { $set: { sale: false } } )

This update() operation will set the sale field value in the inventory collection where the tags field holds an array with no elements matching an element in the array ["appliances", "school"] or where a document does not contain the tags field.

The inequality operator $nin is not very selective since it often matches a large portion of the index. As a result, in many cases, a $nin query with an index may perform no better than a $nin query that must scan all documents in a collection. See also Query Selectivity.

See also

find(), update(), $set.