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Dali Developer Documentation

Dali JPA Tools – Internal/External Developer Documentation

Last updated: Aug 13, 2008 Archive

Major Features

JPA Structure View

  • Contains the elements of an Entity
  • Visual representation
  • Allows navigation of JPA Details view

JPA Details View

  • Provides rich UI for the editing of persistence related metadata
  • Unified editing for Java annotation and orm.xml
  • Provides defaults values for JPA metadata


  • Validation in the form of “Problems” are reported based on the state of the Persistent Types (Entities, Mapped Superclass, Embeddable) in our model

Entity Generation from Tables

  • Generates spec compliant Entities from tables defined in the DTP database definition model

Architecture diagram

Coming soon...

Dali Terminology

Resource Model: A resource model directly reflects a given resource (Java source or XML source). Dali currently maintains three resource models, including one for persistence.xml, the XML mapping file(s), and one for JPA Annotations. For XML resources(Mapping File or persistence.xml) this is a generated EMF model that uses the WTP translator framework to read/write the XML source. On the Java side it is a non-EMF object model that represents the JPA Annotations on the Java Types and Attributes.

Context Model: A context model represents only the non-resource related JPA metadata. Dali currently maintains three context models, including one for persistence.xml, the XML mapping file(s), and one for JPA Annotations. It pulls together the persistence.xml, XML Mapping File and Java resource models and uses common API. As and example, it gives context to the Java Annotations so that a JavaResourcePersistentType in the resource model with Entity, Table, SecondaryTable annotations on it becomes a PersistentType with an Entity TypeMapping in the context model. The context model interfaces are used by the Dali UI and adopters.

Dali Plug-ins (out of date)


Description: Resource model and Context model interfaces and implementations

Dependency on:

  • eclipse.core
  • eclipse.emf
  • eclipse.dali.db
  • eclipse.dali.utility
  • eclipse.jdt.core
  • eclipse.jem.util
  • eclipse.wst.common.emf
  • eclipse.wst.common.environment
  • eclipse.wst.common.modulecore
  • eclipse.wst.sse.core
  • eclipse.wst.validation
  • eclipse.wst.xml


Description: wst.rdb wrapper model, serves as Dali’s interface to the wst.rdb model. Also provides UI extension of New Connection Wizard.

Dependency on:

  • eclipse.core
  • eclipse.jface
  • eclipse.dali.utility
  • eclipse.wst.rdb.server.ui
  • eclipse.wst.rdb.core
  • eclipse.wst.rdb.models.sql


Description: Responsible for DDL generation

Dependency on:

  • eclipse.dali.core
  • eclipse.dali.db
  • eclipse.dali.utility
  • eclipse.jdt.core
  • eclipse.ui
  • org.eclipse.wst.rdb.core
  • org.eclipse.wst.rdb.fe.ui
  • org.eclipse.wst.rdb.models.dbdefinition
  • org.eclipse.wst.rdb.models.sql


Description: User docs and infopop for Dali

Dependency on:

  • org.eclipse.ui.cheatsheets


Description: EMF Edit layer; generated item providers for EMF Entity and Packaging models

Dependency on:

  • eclipse.dali.core
  • eclipse.emf.edit


Description: Contains model and generator code for generating Entities from tables

Dependency on:

  • eclipse.core
  • eclipse.dali.db
  • eclipse.dali.utility
  • eclipse.jdt.core


Description: Contains the actions, composites, data models, wizards, views, and perspective that make up the Dali UI.

Dependency on:

  • eclipse.dali.*
  • eclipse.debug.ui
  • org.eclipse.emf.edit.ui
  • org.eclipse.jdt.core
  • org.eclipse.jdt.launching
  • org.eclipse.jdt.ui
  • org.eclipse.jface.text
  • org.eclipse.ui.console
  • org.eclipse.ui.forms
  • org.eclipse.ui.ide
  • org.eclipse.ui.workbench.texteditor
  • org.eclipse.wst.common.environment
  • org.eclipse.wst.common.frameworks.ui
  • org.eclipse.wst.common.modulecore
  • org.eclipse.wst.rdb.server.ui
  • org.eclipse.wst.sse.core
  • org.eclipse.wst.xml.ui


Description: EMF Binding framework; provides binding mechanism to streamline the linkage of UI controls to corresponding EMF model attributes. (This will likely transition to use the new JFace Data Binding Framework -

Dependency on:

  • eclipse.core
  • eclipse.dali.ui.selection
  • eclipse.emf.ecore.xml
  • eclipse.emf.edit.ui


Description: UI Selection Framework; provides a selection manager to listen for and coordinate selection events that the Dali UI is interested in. This plug-in is still undergoing a lot of refactoring.

Dependency on:

  • eclipse.core
  • eclipse.emf.ecore.xml
  • eclipse.ui
  • eclipse.ui.workbench.texteditor


Description: A set of utility classes for the Dali plug-in. Contains a set of advanced iterators, plus utilities for dealing with Files, Strings, Collections, etc.

No Dependencies.


Description: Contains a suite of headless JUnit tests for the core plug-in.


Description: Contains a comprehensive set of tests for the Utility classes.

Major Integration points


  • The Dali Core makes extensive use of the JDT Core model and utilities for the purpose of reading and writing Java class metadata.
  • Code Completion


The Dali DB and DDL plug-ins make use of the data definition mode and the New Connection Wizard. The Datasource Explorer view is an integral part of the Dali Persistence Perspective.


  • Facets
  • EMF-XML Translator Framework
  • ArtifactEdit/ModelProvider


  • Project Explorer

Extension Points (Out of date)

Core Mapping Extension

This mapping extension creates a way for Dali extenders to define additional mapping types beyond the JPA specification. This mapping extension is used internally to define the JPA mapping types in the core model. It also formalizes the necessary classes to define for extending the core types. For UI support, a corresponding extension in the UI must be defined.

Core Mapping Extension example:

<extension point="org.eclipse.dali.core.mappings">
  <mapping annotationName="ExtendedBasic"

Core Default Mapping Extension

This mapping extension allows an extender to redefine the default mapping for a simple attribute type.

Core Default Mapping Extension example:

<extension point="org.eclipse.dali.core.defaultMappings">

UI Mapping Extension

This mapping extension allows an extender to define a mapping type that will be available for selection in the UI. A corresponding Core Mapping Extension is required to add mapping support to the UI. After defining a UI Mapping extension, the defined mapping will be available for selection in the “Map As:” combo box in the persistence properties of a persistent attribute.

UI Mapping Extension example:

<extension point="org.eclipse.dali.ui.mappings">
  <mapping annotationName="ExtendedBasic"

UI Default Mapping Extension

This extension is used to redefine the Default mapping for the UI. It should correspond with the default Mapping extension defined in the Core Default Mapping extension.


Statement on API

Provisional API is available as of the 2.0 release.

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