Associations

Auto Create/Update

GORM will auto-save associations and its reference using Upsert when creating/updating a record.

user := User{
Name: "jinzhu",
BillingAddress: Address{Address1: "Billing Address - Address 1"},
ShippingAddress: Address{Address1: "Shipping Address - Address 1"},
Emails: []Email{
{Email: "jinzhu@example.com"},
{Email: "jinzhu-2@example.com"},
},
Languages: []Language{
{Name: "ZH"},
{Name: "EN"},
},
}

db.Create(&user)
// BEGIN TRANSACTION;
// INSERT INTO "addresses" (address1) VALUES ("Billing Address - Address 1"), ("Shipping Address - Address 1") ON DUPLICATE KEY DO NOTHING;
// INSERT INTO "users" (name,billing_address_id,shipping_address_id) VALUES ("jinzhu", 1, 2);
// INSERT INTO "emails" (user_id,email) VALUES (111, "jinzhu@example.com"), (111, "jinzhu-2@example.com") ON DUPLICATE KEY DO NOTHING;
// INSERT INTO "languages" ("name") VALUES ('ZH'), ('EN') ON DUPLICATE KEY DO NOTHING;
// INSERT INTO "user_languages" ("user_id","language_id") VALUES (111, 1), (111, 2) ON DUPLICATE KEY DO NOTHING;
// COMMIT;

db.Save(&user)

If you want to update associations’s data, you should use the FullSaveAssociations mode:

db.Session(&gorm.Session{FullSaveAssociations: true}).Updates(&user)
// ...
// INSERT INTO "addresses" (address1) VALUES ("Billing Address - Address 1"), ("Shipping Address - Address 1") ON DUPLICATE KEY SET address1=VALUES(address1);
// INSERT INTO "users" (name,billing_address_id,shipping_address_id) VALUES ("jinzhu", 1, 2);
// INSERT INTO "emails" (user_id,email) VALUES (111, "jinzhu@example.com"), (111, "jinzhu-2@example.com") ON DUPLICATE KEY SET email=VALUES(email);
// ...

Skip Auto Create/Update

To skip the auto save when creating/updating, you can use Select or Omit, for example:

user := User{
Name: "jinzhu",
BillingAddress: Address{Address1: "Billing Address - Address 1"},
ShippingAddress: Address{Address1: "Shipping Address - Address 1"},
Emails: []Email{
{Email: "jinzhu@example.com"},
{Email: "jinzhu-2@example.com"},
},
Languages: []Language{
{Name: "ZH"},
{Name: "EN"},
},
}

db.Select("Name").Create(&user)
// INSERT INTO "users" (name) VALUES ("jinzhu", 1, 2);

db.Omit("BillingAddress").Create(&user)
// Skip create BillingAddress when creating a user

db.Omit(clause.Associations).Create(&user)
// Skip all associations when creating a user

NOTE:
For many2many associations, GORM will upsert the associations before creating the join table references, if you want to skip the upserting of associations, you could skip it like:

db.Omit("Languages.*").Create(&user)

The following code will skip the creation of the association and its references

db.Omit("Languages").Create(&user)

Select/Omit Association fields

user := User{
Name: "jinzhu",
BillingAddress: Address{Address1: "Billing Address - Address 1", Address2: "addr2"},
ShippingAddress: Address{Address1: "Shipping Address - Address 1", Address2: "addr2"},
}

// Create user and his BillingAddress, ShippingAddress
// When creating the BillingAddress only use its address1, address2 fields and omit others
db.Select("BillingAddress.Address1", "BillingAddress.Address2").Create(&user)

db.Omit("BillingAddress.Address2", "BillingAddress.CreatedAt").Create(&user)

Association Mode

Association Mode contains some commonly used helper methods to handle relationships

// Start Association Mode
var user User
db.Model(&user).Association("Languages")
// `user` is the source model, it must contains primary key
// `Languages` is a relationship's field name
// If the above two requirements matched, the AssociationMode should be started successfully, or it should return error
db.Model(&user).Association("Languages").Error

Find Associations

Find matched associations

db.Model(&user).Association("Languages").Find(&languages)

Find associations with conditions

codes := []string{"zh-CN", "en-US", "ja-JP"}
db.Model(&user).Where("code IN ?", codes).Association("Languages").Find(&languages)

db.Model(&user).Where("code IN ?", codes).Order("code desc").Association("Languages").Find(&languages)

Append Associations

Append new associations for many to many, has many, replace current association for has one, belongs to

db.Model(&user).Association("Languages").Append([]Language{languageZH, languageEN})

db.Model(&user).Association("Languages").Append(&Language{Name: "DE"})

db.Model(&user).Association("CreditCard").Append(&CreditCard{Number: "411111111111"})

Replace Associations

Replace current associations with new ones

db.Model(&user).Association("Languages").Replace([]Language{languageZH, languageEN})

db.Model(&user).Association("Languages").Replace(Language{Name: "DE"}, languageEN)

Delete Associations

Remove the relationship between source & arguments if exists, only delete the reference, won’t delete those objects from DB.

db.Model(&user).Association("Languages").Delete([]Language{languageZH, languageEN})
db.Model(&user).Association("Languages").Delete(languageZH, languageEN)

Clear Associations

Remove all reference between source & association, won’t delete those associations

db.Model(&user).Association("Languages").Clear()

Count Associations

Return the count of current associations

db.Model(&user).Association("Languages").Count()

// Count with conditions
codes := []string{"zh-CN", "en-US", "ja-JP"}
db.Model(&user).Where("code IN ?", codes).Association("Languages").Count()

Batch Data

Association Mode supports batch data, e.g:

// Find all roles for all users
db.Model(&users).Association("Role").Find(&roles)

// Delete User A from all user's team
db.Model(&users).Association("Team").Delete(&userA)

// Get distinct count of all users' teams
db.Model(&users).Association("Team").Count()

// For `Append`, `Replace` with batch data, the length of the arguments needs to be equal to the data's length or else it will return an error
var users = []User{user1, user2, user3}
// e.g: we have 3 users, Append userA to user1's team, append userB to user2's team, append userA, userB and userC to user3's team
db.Model(&users).Association("Team").Append(&userA, &userB, &[]User{userA, userB, userC})
// Reset user1's team to userA,reset user2's team to userB, reset user3's team to userA, userB and userC
db.Model(&users).Association("Team").Replace(&userA, &userB, &[]User{userA, userB, userC})

Delete with Select

You are allowed to delete selected has one/has many/many2many relations with Select when deleting records, for example:

// delete user's account when deleting user
db.Select("Account").Delete(&user)

// delete user's Orders, CreditCards relations when deleting user
db.Select("Orders", "CreditCards").Delete(&user)

// delete user's has one/many/many2many relations when deleting user
db.Select(clause.Associations).Delete(&user)

// delete each user's account when deleting users
db.Select("Account").Delete(&users)

NOTE:
Associations will only be deleted if the deleting records’s primary key is not zero, GORM will use those priamry keys as conditions to delete selected associations

// DOESN'T WORK
db.Select("Account").Where("name = ?", "jinzhu").Delete(&User{})
// will delete all user with name `jinzhu`, but those user's account won't be deleted

db.Select("Account").Where("name = ?", "jinzhu").Delete(&User{ID: 1})
// will delete the user with name = `jinzhu` and id = `1`, and user `1`'s account will be deleted

db.Select("Account").Delete(&User{ID: 1})
// will delete the user with id = `1`, and user `1`'s account will be deleted

Association Tags

Tag Description
foreignKey Specifies column name of the current model that is used as a foreign key to the join table
references Specifies column name of the reference’s table that is mapped to the foreign key of the join table
polymorphic Specifies polymorphic type such as model name
polymorphicValue Specifies polymorphic value, default table name
many2many Specifies join table name
joinForeignKey Specifies foreign key column name of join table that maps to the current table
joinReferences Specifies foreign key column name of join table that maps to the reference’s table
constraint Relations constraint, e.g: OnUpdate,OnDelete

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