Software Architecture for iModel.js Apps
The software architecture of iModel.js was driven by the following goals:
- Support iModel-based services running in any cloud or on premises
- Support iModel-based web/desktop/mobile apps
- Re-use business logic across web, desktop, and mobile apps
- Re-use HTML GUI across web, desktop, and mobile apps
Backend Architecture Layers:
- Application Backend (TypeScript)
- iModel.js Backend Framework (TypeScript)
- iModel.js Native Libraries (C++)
Frontend Architecture Layers:
- Application Frontend (TypeScript)
- iModel.js Frontend Framework (TypeScript)
- HTML GUI
- Web Browser
iModel.js Web App backends are Node.js applications.
This is how the iModel.js Native Libraries are exposed to the iModel.js backend framework.
Portable application logic is written in TypeScript and calls TypeScript APIs exposed from the
Notice that the backend architecture is identical between Agents and interactive Web Applications.
Web App frontends run in a web browser and use HTML GUI for presentation and APIs exposed from the
@bentley/imodeljs-frontend package for Remote Procedure Calls (RPC) into functionality implemented on the backend.
The frontend --> backend communication is over HTTPS for interactive web applications.
Also see Logging and ActivityIds
iModel.js desktop applications use the Electron Framework. The backend architecture is the same as with iModel.js Web Apps because Electron also uses Node.js. The only difference in the frontend architecture is that an embedded Chromium Browser replaces a standalone Web Browser.
The frontend --> backend communication is over Inter Process Communication (IPC) as provided by Electron.
The following diagram compares the architecture of web, desktop, and mobile applications and shows how the goals of portability and reuse are accomplished.