Shutdown of GrapheneDB’s Heroku Add-on on January 14, 2021

What is happening?

GrapheneDB is shutting down its Heroku add-on on January 14, 2021.

On this date, all GrapheneDB Heroku add-ons will be de-provisioned from the partner applications. You must take action before this date so that your application does not lose access to its database.

Before finally deleting databases, GrapheneDB will keep them running for one additional week for customers that have not taken action before Jan 14th so that they can still restore or access their data.

Why is GrapheneDB shutting down its Heroku add-on?

GrapheneDB started hosting graph databases in 2013. At that time, there was a value in being able to deploy a graph database in the cloud quickly. Right now there are many options and there is no significant value anymore in basic hosting, but more in advanced features for your production deployments.

GrapheneDB wants to focus on being the best graph database as a service for production deployments and maintaining the addon is slowing down that goal.

You will still be able to use Heroku with GrapheneDB, just not as a Heroku add-on.

What action is required? How can I keep my database running?

To preserve access to your database and avoid service interruption from your application on the shutdown date, you can follow the migration process specifically designed for this purpose.

It consists of:

  1. A banner that you can access by navigating to GrapheneDB's admin interface via Heroku (as you usually would access). You will get here a detachment code that will help identify your deployment. More info here
  2. Detachment page that you can access after signing up to GrapheneDB. More info here


Add-ons plans supported for detaching process

Only add-ons running standard-1 plans and higher, and Neo4j 3.3 version or higher are supported for detaching and migrating to GrapheneDB. Please read here your options in case you're not running a supported plan or version.

Getting your detachment code

If you log in to GrapheneDB's admin interface via the Heroku add-on view and your add-on supports the migration, you will see a new banner explaining the detaching process, a detachment code, and a link to sign up or log in to GrapheneDB. Please follow the signup link if you haven't created an account yet or the login if you have already signed up before.


Either way, you should be redirected to the following page that will guide you through the process:

Detaching process

Once you've signed up you will get redirected to the detachment page, which will guide you in 5 steps through the process.


Step 1: Add a payment method to your new GrapheneDB account.

You will need to add a payment method and billing details before being able to continue the process.

Step 2: Add a Private Network

Databases on GrapheneDB are deployed on Private Networks. You can read more on Private Networks GrapheneDB Management API. Please create a Private Network in the same region of your add-on.

Step 3: Detach and migrate

Once you've created a Private Network in the same region as your add-on and there is a valid payment method, you will be able to launch the detach operation.

  1. Select the Private Network you've created before.
  2. Paste the detachment code of your add-on. You can get the detachment code by signing it to GrapheneDB's admin interface via Heroku (see Getting detachment code section).
  3. Please create a name for your migrated database.
  4. Finally, please click on the "Detach and migrate" button and a new modal will show up with a confirmation button.



There is downtime involved in migrating your database to a new GrapheneDB plan depending on the size of your dataset. For 1GB, approx. 15min, for 5GB, 20min.

Your database will get detached from Heroku and migrated to a new plan on your new account:

  • Dataset is migrated.
  • URL and credentials will be maintained. Your app will still be able to connect as usual right after the operation.
  • There is a detachment from Heroku, meaning that you won't be able to access to your deployment anymore from Heroku, but by logging in directly to your new account via

Step 4: Duplicate config vars

Although your config vars are still going to work after the operation, Heroku will delete the config vars created by GrapheneDB when you remove the GrapheneDB addon in the last step. Therefore we recommend in this step to duplicate your current GrapheneDB config vars and replace the old ones in your code.


From now on, you can create new config vars whenever needed, for instance, if you have multiple users for your deployments.


Managing Heroku config vars

Whenever you set or remove a config var using any method, your app is restarted and a new release is created. You can read more here

Step 5: Destroy Heroku add-on

If you have followed all the steps successfully you're totally independent now from the GrapheneDB add-on. However, Heroku is still going to charge for it until it automatically deletes it on January 14. To avoid paying for it we suggest you destroy the add-on before. Please find more info on how to remove your Heroku addon here.

Not supported add-ons

Add-ons running dev-basic/Sandstone or lower plans

Sandbox, Chalk, Dev-Free, and Dev-Basic are not supporting the automatic detaching process. To be able to use the detachment process, please upgrade first to Standard-1 via Heroku's CLI. This will allow you to detach and migrate to DS1 ($50/mo), which is the lowest plan available on GrapheneDB.

Add-ons running Neo4j 3.2 or lower

If you're running Neo4j 3.2 or lower, please upgrade your database first to be able to move your add-on to GrapheneDB directly. You can upgrade your database by navigating to your add-on and clicking on Upgrade Neo4j. We follow the Neo4j upgrade paths, you might need to run the upgrade operation more than once.


Upgrading Neo4j

Before upgrading Neo4j, please make sure your application and driver are compatible with the new version. We recommend to create a new database first and test everything before upgrading. You can do that directly at GrapheneDB or via Heroku CLI. Please reach out to support if you have any questions.

What happens if I do not take action?

If you do not take the necessary action before the shutdown date, your application will lose access to its database.

What if I have questions and/or concerns?

Please email the GrapheneDB team at [email protected].

We recognize that it’s an inconvenience for you to have to take action, but our team at [email protected] is here to help. We are committed to ensuring that you have a good experience through this process.