Automatically initialize associations in your Rails 3 models.
AutoBuild gives your models the option to automatically initialize (build) their
associations. This is useful to skip the
record.association.build calls in
your models, controllers or views when working with nested fields.
auto_build to your Gemfile:
Just call the
auto_build method in your models:
class User has_one :address has_one :phone auto_build :address end
With this in place,
address will always be initialized, so you don't have to manually call
build_address anywhere. If the
User already has an
address assigned this won't overwrite it.
You can also do:
auto_build :address, :phone,
To initialize several fields. One
after_initialize callback will be created per association.
Works the same as the
class User belongs_to :directory auto_build :directory end
You can automatically initialize a
has_many association in the same way you initialized a
class User has_many :friends auto_build :friends end # User.new.friends.count == 1
The behavior will be the same, it will create a new
Friend if none exists yet. If there's at least
Friend in the collection then nothing will be created.
If you want to always append a new empty object at the end of the collection, you can pass the
:append => true option:
class User has_many :friends auto_build :friends, :append => true end # count = some_user.friends.count # user = User.find(some_user.id) # user.friends.count == count + 1
This will always create a new
Friend instance regardless of the value of
won't overwrite any existing values.
Finally, if you want to always bulk-add a number of records, you can pass the
:count option with
the number of records you want to add:
class User has_many :friends auto_build :friends, :count => 5 end # count = some_user.friends.count # user = User.find(some_user.id) # user.friends.count == count + 5
This will always add 5 extra objects at the end of the collection. It won't overwrite any existing values.
- Watch out for fields with
reject_if. Since the AutoBuild callback will be added as an
after_initializehook this might overwrite the validations done in
- The option
:append => trueis equivalent to
:count => 1.
- None of the operations will overwrite existing objects.
Autobuilding associations means that if there's a value in the column, the object will be loaded every time you load the parent. This is problematic if you're trying to optimize your code. To get a better picture of this:
class User has_one :address auto_build :address end
If you do
User.select(:id) the resulting query will be
SELECT id FROM users; plus
SELECT * from addresses WHERE user_id = 42";. This happens because we're calling calling
every time we initialize a
How it works
auto_build works by adding an
after_initialize callback per association to your model.
To report bugs or suggest new features go to the Issues tracker.