Data Providers

To retrieve data exposed by the API, API Platform uses classes called data providers. A data provider using Doctrine ORM to retrieve data from a database, a data provider using Doctrine MongoDB ODM to retrieve data from a document database, and a data provider using Elasticsearch-PHP to retrieve data from an Elasticsearch cluster are included with the library. The first one is enabled by default. These data providers natively support paged collections and filters. They can be used as-is and are perfectly suited to common uses.

However, you sometimes want to retrieve data from other sources such as another persistence layer or a webservice. Custom data providers can be used to do so. A project can include as many data providers as needed. The first able to retrieve data for a given resource will be used.

For a given resource, you can implement two kinds of interface:

Both implementations can also implement a third, optional, interface called 'RestrictedDataProviderInterface' if you want to limit their effects to a single resource or operation.

In the following examples we will create custom data providers for an entity class called App\Entity\BlogPost. Note, that if your entity is not Doctrine-related, you need to flag the identifier property by using @ApiProperty(identifier=true) for things to work properly (see also Entity Identifier Case).

Custom Collection Data Provider

First, your BlogPostCollectionDataProvider has to implement the CollectionDataProviderInterface:

The getCollection method must return an array, a Traversable or a ApiPlatform\Core\DataProvider\PaginatorInterface instance. If no data is available, you should return an empty array.

<?php
// api/src/DataProvider/BlogPostCollectionDataProvider.php

namespace App\DataProvider;

use ApiPlatform\Core\DataProvider\CollectionDataProviderInterface;
use ApiPlatform\Core\DataProvider\RestrictedDataProviderInterface;
use ApiPlatform\Core\Exception\ResourceClassNotSupportedException;
use App\Entity\BlogPost;

final class BlogPostCollectionDataProvider implements CollectionDataProviderInterface, RestrictedDataProviderInterface
{
    public function supports(string $resourceClass, string $operationName = null, array $context = []): bool
    {
        return BlogPost::class === $resourceClass;
    }

    public function getCollection(string $resourceClass, string $operationName = null): \Generator
    {
        // Retrieve the blog post collection from somewhere
        yield new BlogPost(1);
        yield new BlogPost(2);
    }
}

If you use the default configuration, the corresponding service will be automatically registered thanks to autowiring. To declare the service explicitly, or to set a custom priority, you can use the following snippet:

# api/config/services.yaml
services:
    # ...
    'App\DataProvider\BlogPostCollectionDataProvider':
        tags: [ { name: 'api_platform.collection_data_provider', priority: 2 } ]
        # Autoconfiguration must be disabled to set a custom priority
        autoconfigure: false

Tagging the service with the tag api_platform.collection_data_provider will enable API Platform Core to automatically register and use this data provider. The optional attribute priority allows to define the order in which the data providers are called. The first data provider not throwing a ApiPlatform\Core\Exception\ResourceClassNotSupportedException will be used.

Custom Item Data Provider

The process is similar for item data providers. Create a BlogPostItemDataProvider implementing the ItemDataProviderInterface interface:

The getItem method can return null if no result has been found.

<?php
// api/src/DataProvider/BlogPostItemDataProvider.php

namespace App\DataProvider;

use ApiPlatform\Core\DataProvider\ItemDataProviderInterface;
use ApiPlatform\Core\DataProvider\RestrictedDataProviderInterface;
use ApiPlatform\Core\Exception\ResourceClassNotSupportedException;
use App\Entity\BlogPost;

final class BlogPostItemDataProvider implements ItemDataProviderInterface, RestrictedDataProviderInterface
{
    public function supports(string $resourceClass, string $operationName = null, array $context = []): bool
    {
        return BlogPost::class === $resourceClass;
    }

    public function getItem(string $resourceClass, $id, string $operationName = null, array $context = []): ?BlogPost
    {
        // Retrieve the blog post item from somewhere then return it or null if not found
        return new BlogPost($id);
    }
}

If service autowiring and autoconfiguration are enabled (it's the case by default), you are done!

Otherwise, if you use a custom dependency injection configuration, you need to register the corresponding service and add the api_platform.item_data_provider tag to it. As for collection data providers, the priority attribute can be used to order providers.

# api/config/services.yaml
services:
    # ...
    'App\DataProvider\BlogPostItemDataProvider': ~
        # Uncomment only if autoconfiguration is disabled
        #tags: [ 'api_platform.item_data_provider' ]

Injecting the Serializer in an ItemDataProvider

In some cases, you may need to inject the Serializer in your DataProvider. There are no issues with the CollectionDataProvider, but when injecting it in the ItemDataProvider it will throw a CircularReferenceException.

For this reason, we implemented the SerializerAwareDataProviderInterface:

<?php
// api/src/DataProvider/BlogPostItemDataProvider.php

namespace App\DataProvider;

use ApiPlatform\Core\DataProvider\ItemDataProviderInterface;
use ApiPlatform\Core\DataProvider\SerializerAwareDataProviderInterface;
use ApiPlatform\Core\DataProvider\SerializerAwareDataProviderTrait;
use ApiPlatform\Core\Exception\ResourceClassNotSupportedException;
use App\Entity\BlogPost;

final class BlogPostItemDataProvider implements ItemDataProviderInterface, SerializerAwareDataProviderInterface
{
    use SerializerAwareDataProviderTrait;

    public function supports(string $resourceClass, string $operationName = null, array $context = []): bool
    {
        return BlogPost::class === $resourceClass;
    }

    public function getItem(string $resourceClass, $id, string $operationName = null, array $context = []): ?BlogPost
    {
        // Retrieve data from anywhere you want, in a custom format
        $data = '...';

        // Deserialize data using the Serializer
        return $this->getSerializer()->deserialize($data, BlogPost::class, 'custom');
    }
}

Injecting Extensions (Pagination, Filter, EagerLoading etc.)

ApiPlatform provides a few extensions that you can reuse in your custom DataProvider. Note that there are a few kinds of extensions which are detailed in their own chapter of the documentation. Because extensions are tagged services, you can use the injection of tagged services:

services:
    'App\DataProvider\BlogPostItemDataProvider':
        arguments:
          $itemExtensions: !tagged api_platform.doctrine.orm.query_extension.item

Or in XML:

<services>
    <service id="App\DataProvider\BlogPostItemDataProvider">
        <argument key="$itemExtensions" type="tagged" tag="api_platform.doctrine.orm.query_extension.item" />
    </service>
</services>

Your data provider will now have access to the core extensions, here is an example on how to use them:

<?php
// api/src/DataProvider/BlogPostItemDataProvider.php

namespace App\DataProvider;

use ApiPlatform\Core\Bridge\Doctrine\Orm\Util\QueryNameGenerator;
use ApiPlatform\Core\DataProvider\ItemDataProviderInterface;
use ApiPlatform\Core\DataProvider\RestrictedDataProviderInterface;
use ApiPlatform\Core\Exception\ResourceClassNotSupportedException;
use App\Entity\BlogPost;
use Doctrine\Common\Persistence\ManagerRegistry;

final class BlogPostItemDataProvider implements ItemDataProviderInterface, RestrictedDataProviderInterface
{
    private $itemExtensions;
    private $managerRegistry;

    public function __construct(ManagerRegistry $managerRegistry, iterable $itemExtensions)
    {
      $this->managerRegistry = $managerRegistry;
      $this->itemExtensions = $itemExtensions;
    }

    public function supports(string $resourceClass, string $operationName = null, array $context = []): bool
    {
        return BlogPost::class === $resourceClass;
    }

    public function getItem(string $resourceClass, $id, string $operationName = null, array $context = []): ?BlogPost
    {
        $manager = $this->managerRegistry->getManagerForClass($resourceClass);
        $repository = $manager->getRepository($resourceClass);
        $queryBuilder = $repository->createQueryBuilder('o');
        $queryNameGenerator = new QueryNameGenerator();
        $identifiers = ['id' => $id];

        foreach ($this->itemExtensions as $extension) {
            $extension->applyToItem($queryBuilder, $queryNameGenerator, $resourceClass, $identifiers, $operationName, $context);
            if ($extension instanceof QueryResultItemExtensionInterface && $extension->supportsResult($resourceClass, $operationName, $context))                 {
                return $extension->getResult($queryBuilder, $resourceClass, $operationName, $context);
            }
        }

        return $queryBuilder->getQuery()->getOneOrNullResult();
    }
}