DBIx::Class::DeploymentHandler is Awesome

January 19th, 2011

DBIx::Class::DeploymentHandler is Awesome

DBIx::Class::DeploymentHandler is a fairly young module. It’s a little raw at the edges and a wee bit terse in term of documentation. It’s also a complex thing and, trust me, it’ll takes more than a few minutes of playing with it to get your mind around how it works. But once you begin to understand what it can do, Whoa, that’s one seriously powerful beast, that module is. But don’t take my word for it, let me show you.

Say that I have a DBIx::Class representation of my database’s schema, with three versions already tucked in the repository. Then, I can write a little script called prep_db.pl:


And with it, do:

$ git checkout v1 && ./prep_db.pl 
processing version 1 of MyDB::Schema...
generating deployment script
generating graph

$ git checkout v2 && ./prep_db.pl 
processing version 2 of MyDB::Schema...
generating deployment script
generating upgrade script
generating downgrade script
generating graph

$ git checkout v3 && ./prep_db.pl 
processing version 3 of MyDB::Schema...
generating deployment script
generating upgrade script
generating downgrade script
generating graph

Once this is, done, we’ll have a new direction, sql, in our project:

$ tree sql
|-- diagram-v1.png
|-- diagram-v2.png
|-- diagram-v3.png
|-- MySQL
|   |-- deploy
|   |   |-- 1
|   |   |   |-- 001-auto.sql
|   |   |   `-- 001-auto-__VERSION.sql
|   |   |-- 2
|   |   |   |-- 001-auto.sql
|   |   |   `-- 001-auto-__VERSION.sql
|   |   `-- 3
|   |       |-- 001-auto.sql
|   |       `-- 001-auto-__VERSION.sql
|   |-- downgrade
|   |   |-- 2-1
|   |   |   `-- 001-auto.sql
|   |   `-- 3-2
|   |       `-- 001-auto.sql
|   `-- upgrade
|       |-- 1-2
|       |   `-- 001-auto.sql
|       `-- 2-3
|           `-- 001-auto.sql
|-- PostgreSQL
|   ... same as for MySQL
`-- SQLite
    ... ditto

What does that mean? That means that our 60-something lines of Perl above allowed us to automatically generate SQL scripts, for every version of our schema and for SQLite, MySQL and Postgres to

  • deploy the database at that version.

  • upgrade the database from $version-1 to $version.

  • downgrade the database from $version to $version-1.

And if you paid attention, you’ll see that I also threw in at the end of that script a little stanza that uses SQL::Translator to also generate diagrams of the schema’s version that will look like this:

Let’s reiterate, because I think the feat is amazing enough to warrant it: our little program has made trivial the creation of deployment scripts for the database, as well as upgrades and downgrades from and to any version.

With pretty (or at least serviceable) pictures included.

For three different flavors of databases.

Add to that the fact that the deploy/upgrade/downgrade scripts can be subsequently tweaked, or more scripts — both SQL and Perl scripts — can be thrown in the mix for, for example, populate the database for its different incarnations, and it’s not hard to see that this module is a fantastic tool that has the potential to vastly reduce the headaches related to database deployment.