[DDC-544] Extract Interface on Doctrine\ORM\Repository Created: 27/Apr/10  Updated: 09/Apr/13  Resolved: 09/Jul/10

Status: Resolved
Project: Doctrine 2 - ORM
Component/s: ORM
Affects Version/s: 2.0-ALPHA4
Fix Version/s: 2.0-BETA3
Security Level: All

Type: Improvement Priority: Minor
Reporter: Benjamin Eberlei Assignee: Roman S. Borschel
Resolution: Won't Fix Votes: 0
Labels: None


There should be an interface composed of all the methods on the Repository, so that in userland you can do something like:

interface IMyRepository extends Doctrine\ORM\IEntityRepository


class MyRepository extends Doctrine\ORM\EntityRepository implements IMyRepository


That way in your code you could type-hint for IMyRepository, or for the EntityRepository Interface even and it would be indefinately easier to mock or replace the implementation.

Comment by Roman S. Borschel [ 28/Apr/10 ]

To match our naming conventions that should rather be: interface EntityRepository and the old EntityRepository => BasicEntityRepository or similar.

Comment by Christian Heinrich [ 04/May/10 ]

Roman, do you mean that we should rename the file (and class) EntityRepository to BasicEntityRepository and create a new EntityRepository that contains an interface EntityRepository?

If you want me to, I could do this.


Comment by Roman S. Borschel [ 19/May/10 ]

@Christian: Yes, thats what I meant. I will schedule this for BETA3 though. I want BETA2 to be a smooth upgrade without any BC issues, if possible.

Comment by Roman S. Borschel [ 13/Jun/10 ]

I am wondering whether this is really necessary? There are not many methods on EntityRepository and its easy to create your own interface(s) for your repositories that include these few methods. To be consistent with our naming standards there would have to be a bc break which seems unnecessary to me, unless we invent some other name for the interface, i.e. "ObjectRepository".

Comment by Benjamin Eberlei [ 09/Jul/10 ]

Wont fix

Comment by Saem Ghani [ 08/Apr/13 ]

It's unfortunate this wasn't implemented, it's actually a significant issue for us. I have to say I completely disagree with Roman's reasoning in his last comment.

We have a very large database and commensurately many repositories. We're now at a point that we need to fire our own application level events (as an example, we end up having to compose in services a lot), some of them originating within repositories (doctrine events are insufficient, and we need application specific ones). We're using Symfony2 for DIC and build repositories not through doctrine but via services. We consider using setter injection to be a significant anti-pattern, an object should be valid/fully-initialized post construction so we'd rather not do that – if you were wondering. Now for all our repositories that we would like to build in extra functionality we create our own repository class, compose in the doctrine repository and implement the interface by convention (we could write our own, but the mileage sucks). Now where we could have passed in an instance of anything obeying that interface we're stuck (there goes type hinting). We can avoid some drudgery through traits but it's still an unfortunate solution.

If this is at all possible (even if it has a less than ideal name), we'd very much appreciate this, thank you.

PS. A BC break in beta would have been very easy and now it sucks even more.

Comment by Marco Pivetta [ 08/Apr/13 ]

Saem Ghani there is such an interface in doctrine common. Check Doctrine\Common\Persistence\ObjectRepository at https://github.com/doctrine/common/blob/2.3.2/lib/Doctrine/Common/Persistence/ObjectRepository.php

Comment by Saem Ghani [ 08/Apr/13 ]

Marco: I'm afraid that is incomplete. EntityRepository has a number of methods that fall outside of the scope of those prototyped in ObjectRepository and Selectable interfaces that it implements.

Comment by Benjamin Eberlei [ 08/Apr/13 ]

Why don't you ship your own layer of repositories and disregard the Doctrine ones completly? I do that all the time, and then constructor injection is very simple as well.

Comment by Saem Ghani [ 08/Apr/13 ]

Because the repositories provide features we use. Reusing/staying close to Symfony/Doctrine makes it easier to learn/train, and gives us herd immunity benefits around shared knowledge and most importantly testing. We're trying to reduce maintenance burden, this interface would not only help us do that but anyone else in a similar situation. Additionally, we have many projects most of them large, going across them we've got something like 400+ tables.

Comment by Marco Pivetta [ 08/Apr/13 ]

Saem Ghani your last comment does not really provide any rationale behind extraction of the remaining methods into an interface. There's no advantage in extracting those methods to an own interface. createQueryBuilder, createResultSetMappingBuilder, createNamedQuery, createNativeNamedQuery, clear, __call, getEntityManager, getClassMetadata are all utility methods that are not good candidates for an interface. You can easily re-implement those on an existing entity manager.

Just use the Doctrine\Common\Persistence\ObjectRepository API: you should actually stick to that to increase portability across the various object managers in doctrine project.

If you need all those methods too, you are looking for inheritance, not composition (and probably are delegating too much responsibility to the repository).

Comment by Saem Ghani [ 09/Apr/13 ]

Marco, rather than looking at each comment in isolation (which is what seems to be happening), please take things in aggregate. I've provided the rationale in previous comments. If you require more information I can clarify further.

Extracting as an interface would:

  • Make it easier to make mocks during testing (right now a mock EntityManager and ClassMetadata instance must also be mocked out), this is significant friction/noise during testing
  • Allow people to compose as opposed to inherit, especially important when you have features that are specific to relational stores
  • We have Entities that are represented by data in the database AND on the file system. All of a sudden inheriting from a doctrine EntityRepository makes just as much sense as inheriting from a FileSystemRepository (of our own making). All the while the responsibility is the same, load/store of Entities, the finders/query methods still make sense.
  • At the same time the finder API is very useful (duplicating the code would suck, as was suggested earlier), but having to manually maintain that contract with each doctrine release is an unnecessary burden, not just for us, but anyone else in our predicament
  • Creating our own interface means we can't abstract over 3rd party repositories provided by other bundles.
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