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In this tutorial, we will learn about module tree definition. A module tree definition is a structure defined using YAML or, alternatively, JSON format. You describe what your system needs, which generally consists of a few main sections: actions, entities, and DTOs.

Content of the document:

  1. Overview of Module3 definition
  2. Defining DTOs
  3. Data Types in Fireback
  4. Defining Entities
  5. Defining Relations in Fireback Fields
  6. Defining Actions
  7. Reactive Actions
  8. Generating Code from Definitions
  9. Automating Code Generation in VS Code
  10. Automating Code Generation in IntelliJ IDEA

Overview of Module3 definition

Using Fireback, you define the necessary components, and from that definition, back-end and front-end code can be generated. While you can define the module tree directly in a programming language like Go without using YAML, YAML simplifies the process and reduces the workload by providing a structured approach. Also, fireback is well tuned to convert these yaml to code using cli in an streamlined process.

The module tree format primarily focuses on how the database structure should be managed, table relationships, and how API calls are directed to them. For example, if you want to have a list of users, you need to define an action for retrieving the user list and define two DTOs: one for the criteria and one for the user itself. To implement this functionality, you write a function in Golang or Java containing the necessary logic.

DTOs (Data Transfer Objects) are simple classes. When you define a DTO, it is converted into a class in Java or a struct in Golang, and similarly into TypeScript, Swift, and other languages supported by Fireback.

Entities are more complex. When you define an entity, such as a video entity with fields like title, length, and total views, it creates a corresponding entity in the database. It also generates various actions, such as video update and bulk update, and handles the event system. For instance, if a video is updated, an event is triggered in the back end, notifying the front end of the update.

Entities cover many aspects of a real world entity management, from API call, CLI action, permissions, translation. In fact, an entity defined in fireback is a ready to go production feature, without any extra modification most of the time.

Defining DTOs

Dto, is the simplest form of data type in most applications. DTOs are class or struct in different programming languages, and their job is to compose a message, and usually they are encoded as json, or being read from a json string.

For example, in a POST message on http, your post body might represent a json with name and password field, therefor we can say you have a DTO with email and password fields, and we might also call it UserLoginReqDto. Fireback adds Dto affix to all DTOs, to make it clearer as a convention.

Now, let's define this dto in a yaml format, compatible with Fireback Module3 format:

# Name the module, and explain it's path. This is how the code gen would be organized
# in different platforms.
name: test
path: test

## dto is an array, you can define as many as dtos you want.
- name: userLoginReq
    # Set the name of the field, and then type of it as string.
  - name: email
    type: string

# Add more dto here

In fireback, defining all DTOs most go under dto item, also you need to define name and path for each module you are creating. (For module, not for each dto).

Data Types in Fireback

Fireback supports various data types:

  • bool: Represents a boolean value, true or false.
  • string: Represents text data.
  • html: Represents html data.
  • enum: Common enum system.
  • date: A rich date type used for date
  • daterange: A rich date type, for saving range of dates (from/to date)
  • int64: Represents a 64-bit integer, suitable for large integer values.
  • float64: Represents a 64-bit floating-point number, providing precision for decimal values.
  • object: An object field, can have it's own fields, act as dependent table to the parent table
  • array: It's similar to the object, but it it's an array of items depeneding
  • many2many: It creates a many 2 many relation between another entity. Data does not depend on connecting table.
  • one: It's one 2 one relation between entity and another entity.

Fireback also introduces data types for representing relationships between data. One such type is the Object type, which indicates the presence of another object (another table in the database). Objects can contain other objects or arrays. There is a distinction between objects managed by the parent and those managed by a central system (hub).

Defining Fields

Defining DTOs, entities, fields, and actions in Fireback involves specifying fields. A field is an array where you define the necessary fields, and this structure is used consistently across different definitions. Each field typically consists of a name and a type, with types being similar to Golang types. For example, you can use int64 for integers and float64 for floating-point numbers, which are translated to equivalent types in Java, TypeScript, etc.

This tutorial aims to provide you with a comprehensive understanding of module tree definitions in Fireback, helping you structure your system effectively. Stay tuned as we explore each section in detail.

Defining Actions

Actions, are generally representing http calls, with a body, and a response type. Fireback follows google json styleguide for errors and data.

name: test
path: test


  # name the action
  - name: importUser

    # Set a url for http path
    url: /user/import

    # How that action would be named in cli action list
    cliName: userImport

    # similar to http methods, lower case.
    method: post

    # description, which will be appear on cli, or some other places.
    description: Imports users, and creates their passports, and all details

    # Format of the response, is an envelop, which would modify the response
    # using google json styleguide.
    # When using query, it will be returning as data.items (array)
    format: query

    # Define the request body fields. Makes sense on non-get methods
      - name: path
        type: string

    # define the response body. Now understand the response body will 
    # be covered in a Google json styleguide by default
    # if you want to return an array, use format: query
      dto: OkayResponseDto

Defining 'in' and 'out' fields

When defining actions, we can specify in or out properties. We have 3 options:

  • Use dto: Dtonamehere for that.
  • Use entity: entitynamehere for entities
  • Defining the fields directly in, fields: and normal fireback definition of fields. Fireback will generate automatically %Name%ActionReqDto and %Name%ActionResDto if necessary for all the targets.

Note: It does not make sense to define more than one of the options at the same time, so entity has higher priority, and then dto, and then fields.