Migrate from SQLite to Room

The Room persistence library provides a number of benefits over using the SQLite APIs directly:

  • Compile-time verification of SQL queries
  • Convenience annotations that minimize repetitive and error-prone boilerplate code
  • Streamlined database migration paths

If your app currently uses a non-Room implementation of SQLite, read this page to learn how to migrate your app to use Room instead. If Room is the first SQLite implementation that you are using in your app, see Save data in a local database using Room for basic usage information.

Migration steps

Perform the following steps to migrate your SQLite implementation to Room. If your SQLite implementation uses a large database or complex queries, you might prefer to migrate to Room gradually. See Incremental migration for an incremental migration strategy.

Update dependencies

To use Room in your app, you must include the appropriate dependencies in your app's build.gradle file. See Setup for the most up-to-date Room dependencies.

Update model classes to data entities

Room uses data entities to represent the tables in the database. Each entity class represents a table and has fields that represent columns in that table. Follow these steps to update your existing model classes to be Room entities:

  1. Annotate the class declaration with @Entity to indicate that it is a Room entity. You can optionally use the tableName property to indicate that the resulting table should have a name that is different from the class name.
  2. Annotate the primary key field with @PrimaryKey.
  3. If any of the columns in the resulting table should have a name that is different from the name of the corresponding field, annotate the field with @ColumnInfo and set the name property to the correct column name.
  4. If the class has fields that you do not want to persist in the database, annotate those fields with @Ignore to indicate that Room should not create columns for them in the corresponding table.
  5. If the class has more than one constructor method, indicate which constructor Room should use by annotating all of the other constructors with @Ignore.


@Entity(tableName = "users")
data class User(
  @ColumnInfo(name = "userid") val mId: String,
  @ColumnInfo(name = "username") val mUserName: String?,
  @ColumnInfo(name = "last_update") val mDate: Date?,


@Entity(tableName = "users")
public class User {

  @ColumnInfo(name = "userid")
  private String mId;

  @ColumnInfo(name = "username")
  private String mUserName;

  @ColumnInfo(name = "last_update")
  private Date mDate;

  public User(String userName) {
    mId = UUID.randomUUID().toString();
    mUserName = userName;
    mDate = new Date(System.currentTimeMillis());

  public User(String id, String userName, Date date) {
    this.mId = id;
    this.mUserName = userName;
    this.mDate = date;


Create DAOs

Room uses data access objects (DAOs) to define methods that access the database. Follow the guidance in Accessing data using Room DAOs to replace your existing query methods with DAOs.

Create a database class

Implementations of Room use a database class to manage an instance of the database. Your database class should extend RoomDatabase and reference all of the entities and DAOs that you have defined.


@Database(entities = [User::class], version = 2)
abstract class UsersDatabase : RoomDatabase() {
    abstract fun userDao(): UserDao


@Database(entities = {User.class}, version = 2)
public abstract class UsersDatabase extends RoomDatabase {
  public abstract UserDao userDao();

Define a migration path

Since the database version number is changing, you must define a Migration object to indicate a migration path so that Room keeps the existing data in the database. As long as the database schema does not change, this can be an empty implementation.


val MIGRATION_1_2 = object : Migration(1, 2) {
  override fun migrate(database: SupportSQLiteDatabase) {
    // Empty implementation, because the schema isn't changing.


static final Migration MIGRATION_1_2 = new Migration(1, 2) {
  public void migrate(SupportSQLiteDatabase database) {
    // Empty implementation, because the schema isn't changing.

To learn more about database migration paths in Room, see Migrate your database.

Update the database instantiation

After you have defined a database class and a migration path, you can use Room.databaseBuilder to create an instance of your database with the migration path applied:


val db = Room.databaseBuilder(
          AppDatabase::class.java, "database-name"


db = Room.databaseBuilder(
          UsersDatabase.class, "database-name"

Test your implementation

Make sure you test your new Room implementation:

Incremental migration

If your app uses a large, complex database, it might not be feasible to migrate your app to Room all at once. Instead, you can optionally implement the data entities and Room database as a first step and then migrate your query methods into DAOs later. You can do this by replacing your custom database helper class with the SupportSQLiteOpenHelper object that you receive from RoomDatabase.getOpenHelper().

Additional resources

To learn more about migrating from SQLite to Room, see the following additional resources: