version_fu is a ActveRecord versioning plugin that that is based on the dirty attribute checking introduced in Rails 2.1. It has been updated for compatibility with Rails 3.
gem install version_fu
If you're using Rails 3, add it to your Gemfile
Let's say I have a pages table:
class Page < ActiveRecord::Base # attributes: id, type, title, body, created_at, updated_at, creator_id, author_id end
I want to track any changes made. First step will be to make a new page_versions table:
class CreatePageVersions < ActiveRecord::Migration def self.up create_table :page_versions do |t| t.integer :page_id, :version, :author_id t.string :title t.text :body t.timestamps end end def self.down drop_table :page_versions end end
In this case, the author_id column represents the last person to edit the page. We want to track this attribute with every version. However, the creator_id is the person who created the page. The will never change, so it's not part of the versioned table.
Don't forget to add a version column to your pages table. Have it default to 1 just to be safe (although the plugin should account for this):
class AddVersionToPages < ActiveRecord::Migration def self.up add_column :pages, :version, :integer, :default=>1 end def self.down remove_column :pages, :version end end
Of course if you're adding this plugin to a table with existing data, you'll probably want to instantiate some initial versions to start with.
Alright, so now that the database tables are in place, we can fire up version_fu. It's quite simple:
class Page < ActiveRecord::Base version_fu end
You can pass a few configuration options if need be. If you stick with the defaults above, you can skip all this.
class Page < ActiveRecord::Base version_fu :class_name=>'Version', :foreign_key=>'page_id', :table_name=>'page_versions', :version_column=>'version' end
:class_name - The name of the versioned class. It will be a submodule of the versioning class - e.g. Page::Version
:foreign_key - The column in the versioned table associated with the versioning class
:table_name - The name of the versioned table
:version_column - The name of the version column
Now that you've got some versions, it would be nice to use ActiveRecord associations on it. For example, Page.first.versions.latest.author wouldn't currently work because the Page::Version class doesn't know about the author method. The version_fu call does all you to pass a block which is executed by the versioned class. There is just one gotcha for associations:
class Page < ActiveRecord::Base version_fu do belongs_to :author, :class_name=>'::Author' end end
Don't forget the class name, or you'll get a warning
When to Version
By default a new version will be saved whenever a versioned column is changed. However, you can control this at a more fine grained level. Just override the create_new_version? method. For example, let's say you only want to save a new version if both the page title and body changed. Taking advantage of the dirty attribute methods, you could do something like this:
class Page < ActiveRecord::Base version_fu do belongs_to :author, :class_name=>'::Author' end def create_new_version? title_changed? && body_changed? end end
version_fu was created by Jordan McKible jordan.mckible.com
Available on GitHub at github.com/jmckible/version_fu
Available on RubyGems.org at rubygems.org/gems/version_fu
acts_as_versioned by Rick Olson github.com/technoweenie/acts_as_versioned/tree/master