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Dali Developer Documentation

Revision as of 18:23, 9 March 2011 by (Talk | contribs) (Development Workspace)

Dali Java Persistence Tools – Developer Documentation


CVS Connection Settings

Repository Paths /cvsroot/webtools
User anonymous
Password (leave blank)
Connection Type pserver

The Dali modules are under HEAD/org.eclipse.jpa.

Development Workspace

To set up an Eclipse IDE workspace for working on Dali, perform the following steps:

eclipse.exe -vm C:\jdk\1.6.0_23\bin\javaw.exe -data C:\dev\dali -vmargs -Xmx640M -XX:MaxPermSize=256M
  • Add the appropriate Execution Environment to the host platform
    • If necessary, download and install the final J2SE 1.5 JRE or JDK (
    • Start the host platform
    • Add an Installed JRE (Preferences > Java > Installed JREs)
      • <Standard VM>
      • Select the directory holding the just-installed JRE/JDK
    • NB: This Java installation must be version 1.5. WTP requires Dali to execute on a 1.5 JVM. Installing and using a 1.5 JRE/JDK reduces the possibility of any errors slipping through (e.g. using classes or methods added in later versions of Java). The host platform can be run on a later version of Java; but the Dali plug-ins must be compiled against and capable of executing on Java 1.5. Each Dali project's build path and project-specific Java compiler settings ensure Dali is compiled with Java 1.5 compliance; but there must be a Java 1.5 installation present for the compiler to compiler against the correct Java jars.
  • Set up a target platform
    • Download the latest WTP Integration Build and all of its dependencies (
      • Eclipse SDK
      • EMF and XSD SDK
      • GEF SDK
      • DTP SDK
      • EMF Transaction
      • EMF Validation
      • Orbit
      • WTP SDK
    • Unzip all the downloaded files (except the Orbit file) into the same directory (This directory is different than the directory holding the host platform created in the first step.)
  • Configure the host platform to use the target platform for building plug-ins
    • Start the host platform
    • Add a target platform (Preferences > Plug-in Development > Target Platform
      • <Add...> a new Target definition
      • Initialize the target definition with <Nothing>
      • <Add...> a new location
        • <Directory>
        • Select the directory holding the target platform (i.e. the directory holding the just-unzipped WTP files and pre-requisites)
        • NB: The new location should indicate it has over 1000 plug-ins available
      • <Add...> another location
        • <Software Site>
        • <Add...> a new repository
          • <Archive...>
          • Select the just-downloaded Orbit zip file
        • <Work with:> the just-added Orbit repository
        • Select the EasyMock bundles from the list of Orbit bundles
        • NB: The new location should indicate it has 2 plug-ins available
      • <Finish> the wizard to create the new target platform
  • Check out the Dali code from the Eclipse Foundation-hosted CVS repository
    • Ensure the workspace network proxy is configured, if applicable (Preferences > General > Network Connections)
    • Open the CVS Repository Exploring perspective
    • Create a new Repository Location using the Dali CVS connection settings documented above
    • Download all the plug-in and test plug-in projects in the following directories under HEAD/org.eclipse.jpa/components (The projects are named org.eclipse.jpt.*.):
      • common
      • jaxb
      • jpa
      • jpa_diagram_editor
    • NB: The various plug-in projects must be checked out individually. Do not check out a parent directory; use multi-select to check out multiple projects.

Running JUnit Tests

Once your workspace has been successfully configured, you are ready to run the tests.


  • In the Java perspective, select the Run->Run Configurations... menu item
  • Select the JUnit Plug-in Test node, right-click and New
  • Run a single test
    • Project: org.eclipse.jpt.core.tests
    • Test Class: org.eclipse.jpt.core.tests.internal.JptCoreTests
  • Test Runner can be JUnit 3 or 4
  • On the Main tab
    • Program to run -> Run an application: [No Application] Headless mode
  • On the Arguments tab
    • Insert the following VM arguments:
-Xmx512M -XX:MaxPermSize=128M -Dhttp.proxyPort=80 

Apply and run. After you are able to successfully run the JptCoreTests you can move on to...


  • In the Java perspective, select the Run->Run Configurations... menu item
  • Make a duplicate of your JptCoreTests run configuration
  • Change the following
    • Project: org.eclipse.jpt.eclipselink.core.tests
    • Test Class: org.eclipse.jpt.eclipselink.core.tests.internal.JptEclipseLinkCoreTests
  • On the Arguments tab
    • Make sure the following VM arguments are specified:
-Xmx512M -Dhttp.proxyPort=80


  • Same basic setup as JptCore and EcliseLinkCore tests
    • Project: org.eclipse.jpt.jaxb.core.tests
    • Test Class: org.eclipse.jpt.jaxb.core.tests.internal.JaxbCoreTests
  • On the Arguments tab
    • Make sure the following VM arguments are specified:
-Xmx512M -Dhttp.proxyPort=80


  • Create a new Launch Config under the "JUnit" category
  • Run a single test
    • Project: org.eclipse.jpt.utility.tests
    • Test Class: org.eclipse.jpt.utility.tests.internal.JptUtilityTests
  • No other configuration is needed

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 Persistence Unit

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.

Persistent Type: Any Java Type that will be persisted.

Persistent Attribute: Any Java Attribute that will be persisted.

Mapping: A collection of related JPA metadata that consists of a persistence strategy for a given Type or Attribute.

Type Mapping: A specific way of persisting a Persistent Type, for example, Enity, Mapped Superclass, or Embeddable. All JPA metadata specified at the Type level will be contained by this Type Mapping.

Attribute Mapping: A specific way of persisting a Persistent Attribute, for example, Basic, ManyToOne, or OneToMany. All JPA metadata specified at the Attribute level will be contained by this Attribute Mapping.

Model usage examples

Traversing the Context model for JPA metadata

JpaProject.getRootContext() : JpaRootContextNode
JpaRootContextNode.getPersistenceXml(): PersistenceXml
PersistenceXml.getPersistence() : Persistence
Persistence.persistenceUnits() : ListIterator<PersistenceUnit> (will contain 0 or 1 PersistenceUnits, we don't support multiple yet)
PersistenceUnit.classRefs() : ListIterator<ClassRef> (mappingFileRefs() if you want the orm.xml entities)
ClassRef.getJavaPersistentType() : JavaPersistentType
JavaPersistentType.attributes() : ListIterator<JavaPersistentAttribute>

Retrieving Java Entities in a given persistence unit

public static List<PersistentType> entities(JpaProject jpaProject) {
	List<PersistentType> entities = new ArrayList<PersistentType>();
	JpaRootContextNode rootContext = jpaProject.getRootContext();

	// You'll want null checks in here in cases of the persistence.xml
	// file not being complete.
	// Also, we only support 1 persistenceUnit in the implementation,
	// you should verify there is at least one.
	PersistenceUnit persistenceUnit = rootContext.getPersistenceXml()

	for (Iterator<ClassRef> classRefs = persistenceUnit.classRefs(); classRefs
			.hasNext();) {
		ClassRef classRef =;
		if (classRef.getJavaPersistentType() != null) { // null if
			// there is no java class with this name)
			if (classRef.getJavaPersistentType().getMappingKey() == MappingKeys.ENTITY_TYPE_MAPPING_KEY) {
	// to get entities from orm.xml files
	for (Iterator<MappingFileRef> mappingFiles = persistenceUnit
			.mappingFileRefs(); mappingFiles.hasNext();) {
		MappingFileRef mappingFileRef =;
                MappingFile mappingFile = mappingFileRef.getMappingFile();
		// null checks needed here for EntityMappings
		EntityMappings entityMappings = (EntityMappings) mappingFile.getRoot();
		for (Iterator<OrmPersistentType> persistentTypes = entityMappings
				.getPersistentTypes().iterator(); persistentTypes.hasNext();) {
			OrmPersistentType ormPersistentType =;
			if (ormPersistentType.getMappingKey() == MappingKeys.ENTITY_TYPE_MAPPING_KEY){

	return entities;

Changing the Context model programatically

If you are changing the model outside the UI thread you will need to configure the JPA project to make modifications on the UI thread as necessary. See JpaProject#setThreadLocalModifySharedDocumentCommandExecutor(CommandExecutor).

Also note the model is "updated" asynchronously with every change. If you want these updates to happen synchronously, you will need to set the JPA project's "updater". See JpaProject#setUpdater(Updater). Note the comments in SynchronousJpaProjectUpdater.

Dali Plug-ins


Description: Resource model and Context model interfaces and implementations

Dependency on (see plugin Manifest for details):

  • org.eclipse.jpt.db
  • org.eclipse.jpt.utility

  • org.eclipse.core
  • org.eclipse.emf
  • org.eclipse.jdt
  • org.eclipse.jem
  • org.eclipse.jst
  • org.eclipse.text
  • org.eclipse.wst
  • org.eclipse.xsd


Description: DTP wrapper model, serves as Dali’s interface to the DTP DB model.

Dependency on (see plugin Manifest for details):

  • org.eclipse.jpt.utility

  • org.eclipse.core
  • org.eclipse.datatools.sqltools.editor.core


Description: Dali UI for DTP Connection Wizard

Dependency on (see plugin Manifest for details):

  • org.eclipse.jpt.db

  • org.eclipse.ui
  • org.eclipse.datatools.connectivity.ui
  • org.eclipse.datatools.sqltools.editor.core


Description: Javadoc plugin

No dependencies.


Description: User docs and infopop for Dali

Dependency on (see plugin Manifest for details):

  • org.eclipse.ui.cheatsheets


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

Dependency on (see plugin Manifest for details):

  • eclipse.jpt.db
  • eclipse.jpt.core
  • eclipse.jpt.utility

  • eclipse.core
  • eclipse.jdt.core


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

Dependency on (see plugin Manifest for details):

  • org.eclipse.jpt.core
  • org.eclipse.jpt.db
  • org.eclipse.jpt.db.ui
  • org.eclipse.jpt.gen
  • org.eclipse.jpt.utility

  • org.eclipse.core
  • org.eclipse.draw2d
  • org.eclipse.emf
  • org.eclipse.jdt
  • org.eclipse.jem
  • org.eclipse.jface
  • org.eclipse.jst
  • org.eclipse.ui
  • org.eclipse.wst


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

No Dependencies.


Description: EclipseLink extension, including an EclipseLinkPlatform and the EclipseLink context model.


Description: EclipseLink UI extension, including an EclipseLinkPlatformUI and associated EclipseLink UI composites.


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


  • Project Explorer

Extension Mechanism

Dali's main extension mechanism is the JpaPlatform Interface and extension point.

This interface is to be implemented by a JPA vendor to provide extensions to the core JPA model. The core JPA model will provide functionality for JPA spec annotations in java, persistence.xml and (orm.xml) mapping files. The org.eclipse.jpt.core.genericPlatform extension supplies resource models for those file types. As another vendor option you will have to supply those resource models as well or different ones as necessary.

The extension designates a Platform ID, Label, Class (implemenation of JpaPlatform), and an option to set the platform as a "Default" platform.

Extension Example:


See the EclipseLinkPlatform included in Dali as an exemplary implementation.

Statement on API

Provisional API is available as of the 2.0 release.

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