Data Sources JS APIs

Data Sources JS APIs

The Data Source REST APIs allows you to interact and make any sort of change to your app’s Data Sources from the app itself.

The fliplet-datasources package contains the following namespaces:

Data Sources

Get the list of data sources for the current organization

Fliplet.DataSources.get().then(function (dataSources) {});

Create a new data source

Use the create function to programmatically create a new data source.

  name: 'foo',
  organizationId: 1 // optional
}).then(function (dataSource) {
  // created

If you don’t want your data source to be displayed in the Data Source Manager in Fliplet Studio (available under the “App data” menu in the top header), simply add a specific type to it when it’s being created, e.g.:

  name: 'foo',
  organizationId: 1,
  // Define a type to avoid showing the data source in the data source manager
  type: 'comments'
}).then(function (dataSource) {
  // created

Connect to a data source by ID

Fliplet.DataSources.connect(dataSourceId).then(function (connection) {
  // check below for the list of instance methods for the connection object

Fliplet apps on mobile devices attempt to connect to the offline bundled data sources by default. You can optionally prevent a data source from being bundled by editing its settings in Fliplet Studio, but this can also be custom coded when connecting to the data source.

Providing the offline: false parameter instructs the JS API to only connect to the live online data source to Fliplet APIs:

// Advanced connection passing options as second parameter
Fliplet.DataSources.connect(dataSourceId, {
  offline: false // disable querying offline on mobile devices
}).then(function (connection) {
  // check below for the list of instance methods for the connection object

Once you get a connection, you can use the instance methods described below to find, insert, update and delete data source entries.

Connect to a data source by Name

You can also connect to a datas ource by its name (case-sensitive) using the connectByName method.

Fliplet.DataSources.connectByName("Attendees").then(function (connection) {
  // check below for the list of instance methods for the connection object

Connection instance methods

Fetch all records from a data source

// use "find" with no options to get all entries
connection.find().then(function (records) {
  // records is an array
// use limit and offset for pagination
connection.find({ limit: 50, offset: 10 }).then(function (records) {
  // records is an array

Full example:

Fliplet.DataSources.connect(123).then(function (connection) {
  return connection.find({ limit: 1000 });
}).then(function (records) {
  records.forEach(function (row) {
    // do something for each row, e.g. append it to a html tag

Find a specific record

The findOne method allows you to look for up to one record, limiting the amount of entries returned if you’re only looking for one specific entry.

  where: { name: 'John' }
}).then(function (record) {
  // record is either the found entry "object" or "undefined"

Querying options are based on the Sift.js operators, which mimic MongoDB querying operators. Here’s the supported operators:

  • $in, $nin, $exists, $gte, $gt, $lte, $lt, $eq, $ne, $mod, $all, $and, $or, $nor, $not, $size, $type, $regex, $elemMatch

A few examples to get you started:

// Find records where column "sum" is greater than 10 and column "name"
// is either "Nick" or "Tony"
  where: {
    sum: { $gt: 10 },
    name: { $in: ['Nick', 'Tony'] }

// Find records where column "email" matches the domain ""
  where: {
    email: { $regex: /example\.org$/i }

// Nested queries using the $or operator: find records where either "name" is "Nick"
// or "address" is "UK" and "name" is "Tony"
  where: {
    $or: [
      { name: 'Nick' },
      { address: 'UK', name: 'Tony' }

// Find records where the column "country" is not "Germany" or "France"
// and "createdAt" is on or after a specific date
  where: {
    country: { $nin: ['Germany', 'France'] },
    createdAt: { $gte: '2018-03-20' }

Find a record by its ID

connection.findById(1).then(function (record) {
  // records is the found object

Filter the columns returned when finding records

Use the attributes array to optionally define a list of the columns that should be returned for the records.

// use "find" with "attributes" to filter the columns returned
connection.find({ attributes: ['Foo', 'Bar'] }).then(function (records) {
  // records is an array

You can also use this by passing an empty array as an efficient method to count the number of entries without requesting much data from the server:

connection.find({ attributes: [] }).then(function (records) {
  return records.length;
}).then(function (count) {
  // use count

Run aggregation queries

You can use the built-in Mingo library to run complex aggregation queries or projections on top of Data Sources. Mingo operations can be provided to the find method via the aggregate attribute:

// This example groups records by values found on a sample column "myColumnName"
// and counts the matches for each value
  aggregate: [
      $group: {
        _id: '$data.myColumnName',
        count: { $sum: 1 }
}).then(function (records) {
  // user records as required

Please refer to the Mingo documentation to read more about all the different usages and types of aggregation queries.

Replace the contents of the data source with new records

  { id: 1, name: 'Alice' },
  { id: 2, name: 'Bob', email: '' }
]).then(function onComplete() {


Insert an array of new records into a data source

  { id: 3, name: 'Nick' },
  { id: 4, name: 'Ian', email: '' }
]).then(function onComplete() {


Using connection.append(entriesArray) also triggers “insert “hooks for each created entry. This can be turned off (it defaults to true via the options second parameter) as follows:

connection.append([{ name: 'Nick' }], { runHooks: false })

Commit changes at once to a data source

Use connection.commit(Array) to commit more than one change at once to a data source. You can use this to insert, update and delete entries at the same time with a single request. This makes it very efficient in terms of both minimizing the network requests and computation required from both sides.

List of input parameters:

  • entries: (required array): the list of entries to insert or update ({ data } for insert and { id, data } for updates).
  • append: (optional boolean, defaults to false): set to true to keep existing remote entries not sent in the updates to be made. When this is set to false you will essentially be replacing the whole data source with just the data you are sending.
  • delete: (optional array): the list of entry IDs to remove (when used in combination with append: true).
  • extend (optional boolean, defaults to false): set to true to enable merging the local columns you are sending with any existing columns for the affected data source entries.
  • runHooks (optional array) the list of hooks (insert or update) to run on the data source during the operation.

The following sample request applies the following changes to the data source:

  • inserts a new entry
  • updates the entry with ID 123 merging its data with the new added column(s)
  • deletes the entry with ID 456
  entries: [
    // insert a new entry
    { data: { foo: 'bar' } },

    // update the entry with ID 123
    { id: 123, data: { foo: 'barbaz' } }

  // delete the entry with ID 456
  delete: [456],

  // ensure existing entries are unaffected
  append: true,

  // keep remote columns not sent with
  // the updates of entry ID 123
  extend: true

Insert a single record into the data source

To insert a record into a data source, use the connection.insert method by passing the data to be inserted as a JSON object or a FormData object.

// Using a JSON object
  id: 3,
  name: 'Bill'

// Using a FormData object

Note: the dataSourceId and dataSourceEntryId are reserved keys and should not be used in the input JSON.

The second parameter of the connection.insert function accepts various options as described below:

Options: folderId

When FormData is used as first parameter, your record gets uploaded using a multipart request. If your FormData contains files, you can specify the MediaFolder where files should be stored to using the folderId parameter:

connection.insert(FormData, {
  folderId: 123

Options: ack

If you want to make sure the local (offline) database on the device also gets updated as soon as the server receives your record you can use the ack (which abbreviates the word acknowledge) parameter:

connection.insert({ foo: 'bar' }, {
  // this ensure the local database gets updated straight away, without
  // waiting for silent updates (which can take up to 30 seconds to be received).
  ack: true

Update a record (entry)

Updating a data source entry is done via the connection.insert method by providing its ID and the update to be applied.

connection.update(123, {
  name: 'Bill'

You can also pass a FormData object to upload files using a multipart request. When uploading files, you can also specify the MediaFolder where files should be stored to:

connection.update(123, FormData, {
  mediaFolderId: 456

Import a file into the data sources

connection.import(FormData).then(function onSuccess() {});

Remove a record by its ID

Use the removeById method to remove a entry from a data source given its ID.

connection.removeById(1).then(function onRemove() {});

Join data from other dataSources

View documentation on how to join data from other dataSources

Define views to filter a data source

View documentation on how to define views to filter data of a data source

Configurable operations

Automatically generate a unique ID for your entries

You can instruct the system to automatically generate a GUID (also known as UUID) to all entries you insert by simply defining the guid key for a data source definition in Fliplet Studio (under the “App Data” section) and specifying the target column:

{ "guid": "myPrimaryGuidColumn" }

When this is set, all entries will automatically get a random 36-characters GUID once they get saved in the data source.

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