Flutter Data is extremely customizable and composable thanks to adapters, Flutter Data’s building blocks.

Adapters are essentially Dart mixins applied on RemoteAdapter<T>.

Overriding basic behavior

Several parts are required, for example, to construct a remote findAll call on a Repository<Task>. The framework can take a sensible guess and make that GET /tasks by default – and it does.

Still, a base URL is necessary and the endpoint parts should be overridable.

The way we use these adapters is by declaring them on our @DataRepository annotation in the corresponding model. For example:

mixin JSONServerTaskAdapter on RemoteAdapter<Task> {
  String get baseUrl => '';

class Task with DataModel<Task> {
  final int? id;
  final String title;
  final bool completed;

  Task({, required this.title, this.completed = false});

What if the endpoint actually is at

mixin JSONServerTaskAdapter on RemoteAdapter<Task> {
  String get baseUrl => '';

  String urlForFindAll(Map<String, dynamic> params) => 'todos/all';

Here’s a non-exhaustive list of overridable members:

  • baseUrl: must be implemented or it will throw an error
  • urlForFindAll: defaults to type
  • methodForFindAll: defaults to DataRequestMethod.GET
  • urlForFindOne: defaults to ${type}/${id}
  • methodForFindOne: defaults to DataRequestMethod.GET
  • urlForSave: defaults to ${type}/${id} if updating
  • methodForSave: defaults to DataRequestMethod.PATCH if updating
  • urlForDelete: defaults to ${type}/${id}
  • methodForDelete: defaults to DataRequestMethod.DELETE
  • shouldLoadRemoteAll: fine-grained control over the remote param on findAll
  • shouldLoadRemoteOne: fine-grained control over the remote param on findOne
  • serialize: can customize serialization (like the JSON API Adapter does)
  • deserialize: can customize deserialization (like the JSON API Adapter does)
  • isNetworkError: whether to retry a request when back online
  • type

Every adapter has a type field which by default is a pluralized, camel-cased version of the model class name: Task -> tasks, Sheep -> sheep, CreditCard -> creditCards.

It is typically used when the frontend and the backend name classes differently.

And if we have multiple models that all share the same base URL? Isn’t the above adapter constrained to Task?

We can simply make it generic and apply it to any DataModel in our app!

mixin JSONServerAdapter<T extends DataModel<T>> on RemoteAdapter<T> {
  String get baseUrl => '';

class User with DataModel<User> {
  final int? id;
  final String name;
  final String? email;

  Task({, required,});

Important: As the repository is generated, any change in the list of adapters must be followed by a build in order to take effect.

flutter pub run build_runner build

Trouble generating code? See here.

Any number of adapters can be added and they will be applied in order.

That is:

@DataRepository([A, B, C, D, E])

after codegen will become:

RemoteAdapter<User> with A, B, C, D, E;

Custom actions

Not every API perfectly aligns to CRUD endpoints. Here’s an example on how to create a custom action, using the sendRequest API.

mixin PaymentAdapter on RemoteAdapter<Payment> {
  Future<Payment?> createManualPayment({
    required String paymentType,
    required double amount,
  }) async {
    final appConfig = read(appConfigProvider).instance;

    final payload = {
      'payment': {
        'app_id': appConfig.appId,
        'amount': amount,
        'name': paymentType,
        'provider': 'manual'

    return sendRequest(
      baseUrl.asUri / 'payments.json' & {'v': true},
      method: DataRequestMethod.POST,
      headers: await defaultHeaders & {'X-Client-Id': appConfig.appId},
      body: json.encode(payload),
      onSuccess: (data) {
        return deserialize(data as Map<String, dynamic>).model;

Notice that a Riverpod Reader is available on every adapter as read, too.

The createManualPayment action can be invoked like:

onPressed: () async {
  final payment = await ref.payments.paymentAdapter.createManualPayment(
    paymentType: PaymentType.LIGHTNING_NETWORK,
    amount: amount,
  // ...

This is the signature for the sendRequest method, that performs an HTTP request and returns the result of type R via onSuccess:

FutureOr<R?> sendRequest<R>(
  final Uri uri, {
  DataRequestMethod method = DataRequestMethod.GET,
  Map<String, String>? headers,
  String? body,
  String? key,
  OnRawData<R>? onSuccess,
  OnDataError<R>? onError,
  DataRequestType requestType = DataRequestType.adhoc,
  bool omitDefaultParams = false,
  • uri takes the full Uri (you must provider base URL and query parameters, too)
  • headers takes the full headers (or defaultHeaders if omitted)

With all these building blocks adapters for Wordpress or Github REST access, or even JWT authentication are easy to build.

Many more adapter examples can be found perusing the articles.

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