Entity service paths

Orion Context Broker supports hierarchical scopes, so entities can be assigned to a scope at creation time with updateContext (or related convenience operation). Then, queryContext and subscribeContext (and related convenience operations) can be also scoped to locate entities in the corresponding scopes.

For example, consider an Orion-based application using the following scopes (shown in the figure):

  • Madrid, as first level scope
  • Gardens and Districts, as second-level scope (children of Madrid)
  • ParqueNorte, ParqueOeste and ParqueSur (children of Gardens) and Fuencarral and Latina (children of Districts)
  • Parterre1 and Parterre2 (children of ParqueNorte)

The scope to use is specified using the “Fiware-ServicePath” HTTP in update/query request. For example, to create the entity “Tree1” of type "Tree" in “Parterre1” the following Fiware-ServicePath will be used:

Fiware-ServicePath: /Madrid/Gardens/ParqueNorte/Parterre1

In order to search for “Tree1” in that scope, the same Fiware-ServicePath will be used.

Scopes are hierarchical and hierarchical search can be done. In order to do that the '#' special keyword is used. Thus, a queryContext with pattern entity id “.*” of type “Tree” in /Madrid/Gardens/ParqueNorte/# will return all the trees in ParqueNorte, Parterre1 and Parterre2.

Finally, you can query for disjoint scopes, using a comma-separated list in the Fiware-ServicePath header. For example, to get all trees in both ParqueNorte and ParqueOeste (but not ParqueSur) the following Fiware-ServicePath would be used in queryContext request:

Fiware-ServicePath: /Madrid/Gardens/ParqueNorte, /Madrid/Gardens/ParqueOeste

Some additional remarks:

  • Limitations:

    • Scope must start with "/" (only 'absolute' scopes are allowed)
    • 10 maximum scope levels in a path
    • 50 maximum characters in each level, only alphanum and underscore allowed
    • 10 maximum dijoint scopes paths in a comman separated list in query Fiware-ServicePath header (no more than 1 scope path in update Fiware-ServicePath header)
  • Fiware-ServicePath is an optional header. It is assumed that all the entities created without Fiware-ServicePath (or that don't include service path information in the database) belongs to a root scope "/" implicitely. All the queries without using Fiware-ServicePath (including subscriptions) are on "/#" implicitly. This behavior ensures backward compatibility to pre-0.14.0 versions.

  • It is possible to have an entity with the same ID and type in different Scopes. E.g. we can create entity ID "Tree1" of type "Tree" in /Madrid/Gardens/ParqueNorte/Parterre1 and another entity with ID "Tree1" of type "Tree" in Madrid/Gardens/ParqueOeste without getting any error. However, queryContext can be weird in this scenario (e.g. a queryContext in Fiware-ServicePath /Madrid/Gardens will returns two entities with the same ID and type in the queryContextResponse, making hard to distinguish to which scope belongs each one)

  • Entities belongs to one (and only one) scope.

  • Fiware-ServicePath header is included in NGSI10 notifyContext requests sent by Orion.

  • The scopes entities can be combined orthogonally with the multi-service/multi-tenant functionality. In that case, each “scope tree” lives in a different service/tenant and they can use even the same names with complete database-based isolation. See figure below.

  • Current version doesn’t allow to change the scope to which an entity belongs through the API (a workaround is to modify the _id.servicePath field in the entities collection directly).