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Columns schema overview

Columns schema stores information about table columns to make querying type-safe, and to add additional features for querying.

Note that all columns are non-nullable by default, use .nullable() to mark them as nullable.

Column types

Each column type has a specific database type, input type, output type, and query type:

  • database type is used in migrations to add columns of a specific type, such as integer, varchar.
  • input type is used when creating or updating records.
  • output type is a type of data returned by the database when selecting data.
  • query type is the type accepted for a column when applying where.

In most cases, input, output, and query type are the same, but in some cases may differ.

For example, timestamp will be returned as a string by default (this may be overridden), but when creating or updating it may accept a epoch integer, or string, or a Date object.

ts
// get createdAt field from the first table record
const createdAt: string = await db.someTable.get('createdAt');

await db.someTable.create({
  // Date is fine
  createdAt: new Date(),
});

await db.someTable.create({
  // string in ISO format is fine as well
  createdAt: new Date().toISOString(),
});

The query type of the timestamp is number | string | Date, just like the input type.

You can customize the input type to accept some additional data structure, for example, dayjs objects, but the query type stays the same and cannot be changed.

All column types support the following operators in where conditions:

value can be of the same type as the column, a sub-query, or a raw SQL (using sql function):

ts
db.someTable.where({
  column: {
    equals: value,
    not: value,
    in: [value1, value2, value3],
    notIn: [value1, value2, value3],
  },
});

Different types of columns support different operations in where conditions:

ts
export class SomeTable extends BaseTable {
  readonly table = 'someTable';
  columns = this.setColumns((t) => ({
    name: t.text(3, 100),
    age: t.integer(),
  }));
}

// When querying this table:
db.someTable.where({
  name: {
    // contains is available for strings
    contains: 'x',
  },
  age: {
    // gte is available for numbers
    gte: 18,
  },
});

Add custom columns

It's possible to define custom columns, they can have a special behavior or a meaning, or to simply serve as an alias.

For example, we can add id column which would be an alias to identity().primaryKey() or uuid().primaryKey():

ts
export const BaseTable = createBaseTable({
  columnTypes: (t) => ({
    ...t,
    // for autoincementing integer ID:
    id: () => t.identity().primaryKey(),
    // or, for UUID:
    id: () => t.uuid().primaryKey(),
  }),
});

If you'd like use the cuid2 type of ID, generate new values on JS side:

ts
import { createId } from '@paralleldrive/cuid2';

export const BaseTable = createBaseTable({
  columnTypes: (t) => ({
    ...t,
    id() {
      return t
        .varchar(36)
        .primaryKey()
        .default(() => createId());
    },
  }),
});

And then we can use custom columns on our tables just as well as predefined ones:

ts
export class Table extends BaseTable {
  readonly table = 'table';
  columns = this.setColumns((t) => ({
    // custom column
    id: t.id(),
  }));
}

Override column parsing/encoding

It is possible to override the parsing of columns returned from the database.

You can define an .encode on a column to convert the value when creating or updating records, define .parse to parse values returned from the database, .as will change the TS type of this column to another, enabling different set of column operations inside where.

Let's consider example of overriding a timestamp input and output type.

Validations schemas are optional, here is changing input and output type of timestamp when the schemaConfig is not set:

ts
export const BaseTable = createBaseTable({
  columnTypes: (t) => ({
    ...t,
    timestamp() {
      return t
        .timestamp()
        .encode((input: number) => new Date(input))
        .parse((input) => new Date(input).getTime())
        .as(t.integer());
    },
  }),
});

The same when using Zod or Valibot integration, specify validation schemas:

ts
import { zodSchemaConfig } from 'orchid-orm-zod-schema-to-zod';
import { z } from 'zod';

export const BaseTableWithZod = createBaseTable({
  // or valibotSchemaConfig from 'orchid-orm-valibot'
  schemaConfig: zodSchemaConfig,

  columnTypes: (t) => ({
    ...t,
    timestamp() {
      return (
        t
          .timestamp()
          // first argument is schema of chosen validation library
          .encode(z.number(), (input: number) => new Date(input))
          .parse(z.number(), (input) => new Date(input).getTime())
          .as(t.integer())
      );
    },
  }),
});

The example above demonstrate how to override column types in principle, however, for the specific case of overriding timestamp, there are predefined shortcuts.

timestamp().asNumber() will encode/parse timestamp from and to a number,

timestamp().asDate() will encode/parse timestamp from and to a Date object.

ts
export const BaseTable = createBaseTable({
  columnTypes: (t) => ({
    ...t,
    // Parse timestamps into `Date` objects:
    timestamp: () => t.timestamp().asDate(),
    // Or, parse timestamps into numbers:
    timestamp: () => t.timestamp().asNumber(),
  }),
});

Override column default validation

ORM doesn't validate inputs by itself, use Table.inputSchema() (see Validation methods) in your request handlers, and then it's guaranteed that user won't be able to submit empty or a million chars long username and other text data.

Type of text method forces you to provide the min and max each time when calling it. To simplify this, define common defaults for all text columns:

ts
export const BaseTable = createBaseTable({
  columnTypes: (t) => ({
    ...t,
    text: (min = 3, max = 100) => t.text(min, max),
  }),
});

With such config, all text columns will be validated to have at least 3 and at most 100 characters.

ts
export class SomeTable extends BaseTable {
  readonly table = 'someTable';
  columns = this.setColumns((t) => ({
    id: t.identity().primaryKey(),
    // name will be validated to have at least 3 and at most 100 chars
    name: t.text(),
    // override min
    password: t.text().min(8),
    // override max
    bio: t.text().max(1000),
  }));
}