Import Mappings

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Please refer to Mapping Documents for an introduction.

1 Obtaining Objects in Import Mappings

Figure 1 depicts an example of an Import Mapping document in which two elements from an XML Schema have been selected using the Select elements… dialog. Following this the ReceivedPartners and ReceivedClient entities were added, and mapped to the Result and Client schema elements. Each time the Import Mapping is invoked, a new ReceivedPartners object is created.

Figure 1

1.1 Obtaining an Object

For each XML or JSON object, a Mendix object needs to be obtained. You can create one or you can find an existing object in the database. Alternatively, you can use a custom microflow that returns an object. You can see how a Mendix object is obtained in the window depicted in figure 2, which is shown after double clicking a specific mapping element.

Figure 2

1.2 Attribute Mapping Properties

1.2.1 Obtain Mendix Object Methods

Property Description
Create an object Simply creates a new object. An error can be thrown if there are any before create microflows that fail.
Find an object (by key) Searches for an object, using keys defined in the attributes list. The runtime searches for the object by taking all attributes marked as Key (in the Value element to attribute mapping section below) and converting them to an XPath query. If more than one object is returned by the XPath query, an error will be thrown.
Call a microflow Calls a microflow to obtain an object. If the microflow expects any parameters, these need to be specified in the Select… window. Possible parameters are the input parameter (see above), any parent entity in the mapping and of course any attributes in the current XML element.

1.2.2 If No Object Was Found

This is the action that the runtime will perform when an error occurred in the specified To obtain an object action.

Property Description
Create Create a domain entity to map to.
Ignore Don’t map this element and continue parsing the rest of the XML.
Error Explicitly stop parsing the XML and throw an error. This error needs to be handled in the calling microflow.

At the top level of the mapping, you can choose to decide this at the place where the mapping gets used. In that case, the option if no object was found shows up whenever you use the mapping, for instance in an import mapping action or a call REST service action.

1.3 Setting Associations

Optionally, you may set an association to the parent object. If set to Yes, a list of allowed associations is shown. If an association is selected, it is drawn in the mapping document.

2 Mapping Attributes in Import Mappings

Each selected XML or JSON element needs to be mapped to an attribute in the domain entity. If you don’t want to map certain elements, simply uncheck them in the Select elements… dialog box. Configuring how to map the attributes is done in the screen depicted in figure 3, which is shown after double clicking a specific mapping element.

Figure 3

Having defined the mappings for the attributes, these mappings are also shown in the mapping document. When a specific attribute is selected the schema element is also selected. This works the other way around too. An example of this is shown in figure 4, where the dati attribute is selected in both the Entity and the schema element (in this case dati is mapped to dati).

Figure 4

2.1 Mapping Attribute Properties

Property Description
Entity Attribute Here you can select an attribute to map this value element to. Each value mapping needs to be mapped, except when it is used as a parameter in the microflow to obtain an object.
Schema value element The name and type of the schema value element.
Occurrence Reflects how often the element may occur. This can be 0..1 or 1, depending on if it is required or not. If the value is empty and the minimum required occurrence of the element is 0 (as specified by the schema) the creation of the element will be skipped. In the case you want to never map a value to an optional element, simply disable it in the Select elements… dialog.
Convert using (optional) If the incoming data of a value element is not in the right format, you can use a microflow to convert it to a different data type. The conversion microflow should have one parameter that matches the element type. Alternatively, the parameter may be of type String, as all incoming data is in fact a String. For example, when the incoming data contains an exotic DateTime format, you can parse this format yourself by using a conversion microflow with a String parameter. If this value element maps to an attribute, the return type of the conversion microflow must match the attribute type. Conversion microflows of value elements are executed before these value elements are used as search keys or microflow parameters to obtain an object. This means that when using a value element with a conversion microflow as parameter for the microflow to obtain an object, the parameter type should match the return type of the conversion microflow.
Key This property specifies whether the value element is used as search key to obtain an object. If a value element is used as search key, you must specify the attribute it maps to. The XML value will be matched to the value of this attribute when searching for an object. Attribute with ‘binary’ type is not supported to be set as key.
Map attributes by name If this button is clicked, an attempt is made to match attributes by name. A dialog appears reporting what has been changed.

3 Mapping Parameter

Import mappings have the additional option to receive an incoming parameter. The parameter can be passed in by the calling microflow when microflow uses the import from mapping action.

To define a parameter for your mapping, click the parameter box and select the data type. You can also drag an entity to the parameter box.

You can use a parameter as a key or in a microflow to obtain objects. When you use an entity parameter, you can set associations to it. When you use a primitive parameter (string, integer, etc.), you can write the value to an attribute of an object that is being imported.