CodeQL documentation

Upgrading CodeQL databases

As the CodeQL CLI tools and queries evolve, you may find that some of your CodeQL databases become out of date. You must upgrade out-of-date databases before you can analyze them.

Databases become out of date when:

  • For databases created using the CodeQL CLI, the version of CLI tools used to create them is older than your copy of the CodeQL queries.
  • For databases downloaded from, the CodeQL tools used by to create that revision of the code are older than your copy of the CodeQL queries.

The main branch of the CodeQL queries is updated more often than both the CLI and, so databases are most likely to become out of date if you use the queries on this branch. For more information about the different versions of the CodeQL queries, see “Getting started with the CodeQL CLI.”

Out-of-date databases must be upgraded before they can be analyzed. This topic shows you how to upgrade a CodeQL database using the database upgrade subcommand.


Archived databases downloaded from must be unzipped before they are upgraded.

Running codeql database upgrade

CodeQL databases are upgraded by running the following command:

codeql database upgrade <database>

where <database>, the path to the CodeQL database you want to upgrade, must be specified.

For full details of all the options you can use when upgrading databases, see the “database upgrade” reference documentation.

Progress and results

When you execute the database upgrade command, CodeQL identifies the version of the schema associated with the database. From there, it works out what (if anything) is required to make the database work with your queries and libraries. It will rewrite the database, if necessary, or make no changes if the database is already compatible (or if it finds no information about how to perform an upgrade). Once a database has been upgraded it cannot be downgraded for use with older versions of the CodeQL products.