Using the Export/Import Lifecycle Listener Framework

The ExportImportLifecycleListener framework allows developers to write code that listens for certain staging or export/import events during the publication process. The staging and export/import processes have many behind-the-scenes events that you cannot listen to by default. Some of these, like export successes and import failures, may be events on which you’d want to take some action. You also have the ability to listen for processes comprised of many events and implement custom code when these processes are initiated. Here is a short list of events you can listen for:

  • Staging has started
  • A portlet export has failed
  • An entity export has succeeded

The concept of listening for export/import and staging events sounds cool, but you may be curious as to why listening for certain events is useful. Listening for events can help you know more about your application’s state. Suppose you’d like a detailed log of when certain events occur during an import process. You could configure a listener to listen for certain import events you’re interested in and print information about those events to your console when they occur.

Liferay Portal uses this framework by default in several cases. For instance, Liferay clears the cache when a web content import process finishes. To accomplish this, the lifecycle listener framework listens for an event that specifies that a web content import process has completed. Once that event occurs, there is an event listener that automatically clears the cache. You could implement this sort of functionality yourself for any Portal event. You can listen for a specific event and then complete an action based on when that event occurs. For a list of events you can listen for during Export/Import and Staging processes, see ExportImportLifecycleConstants.

Some definitions are in order:

Events are particular actions that occur during processing.

Processes are longer running groups of events.

In this tutorial, you’ll learn how to use the ExportImportLifecycleListener framework to listen for processes/events during the staging and export/import lifecycles.

Listening to Lifecycle Events

To begin creating your lifecycle listener, you must create a module. Follow the steps below:

  1. Create an OSGi module.

  2. Create a unique package name in the module’s src directory and create a new Java class in that package. To follow naming conventions, begin the class name with the entity or action name you’re processing, followed by ExportImportLifecycleListener (e.g., LoggerExportImportLifecycleListener).

  3. You must extend one of the two Base classes provided with the Export/Import Lifecycle Listener framework: BaseExportImportLifecycleListener or BaseProcessExportImportLifecycleListener. To choose, you’ll need to consider what parts of a lifecycle you want to listen for.

    Extend the BaseExportImportLifecycleListener class if you want to listen for specific events during a lifecycle. For example, you may want to write custom code if a layout export fails.

    Extend the BaseProcessExportImportLifecycleListener class if you want to listen for processes during a lifecycle. For example, you may want to write custom code if a site publication fails. Keep in mind that a process usually consists of many individual events. Methods provided by this base class are only run once when the desired process action occurs.

  4. Directly above the class’s declaration, insert the following annotation:

    @Component(immediate = true, 
                service = ExportImportLifecycleListener.class)
    

    This annotation declares the implementation class of the component and specifies that the portal should start the module immediately.

  5. Specify the methods you want to implement in your class.

Once you’ve successfully created your export/import lifecycle listener module, generate the module’s JAR file and copy it to your Portal’s osgi/modules directory. Once your module is installed and activated in your Portal’s service registry, your lifecycle listener is ready for use in your Portal instance.

If you’re still thirsting for more information on this framework, you’re in luck! Here’s an example, using the LoggerExportImportLifecycleListener. This listener extends the BaseExportImportLifecycleListener, so you should immediately know that it deals with lifecycle events.

The first method isParallel() determines whether your listener should run in parallel with the import/export process, or if the calling method should stop, execute the listener, and return to where the event was fired after the listener has finished. The next method is the onExportImportLifecycleEvent(...) method, which consumes the lifecycle event and passes it through the base class’s method (as long as Debug mode is not enabled).

Each remaining method is called to print logging information for the user. For example, when a layout export starts, succeeds, or fails, logging information directly related to that event is printed. In summary, the LoggerExportImportLifecycleListener uses the lifecycle listener framework to print messages to the log when an export/import event occurs. Other good examples of event lifecycle listeners are CacheExportImportLifecycleListener and JournalCacheExportImportLifecycleListener.

For an example of a lifecycle listener extending the BaseProcessExportImportLifecycleListener class, inspect the ExportImportProcessCallbackLifecycleListener class. Instead of listening for lifecycle events, this class only listens for process actions.

Terrific! You learned about the Export/Import Lifecycle Listener framework, and you’ve learned how to create your own listener for events/processes that occur during export/import of your portal’s content.

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