Other configuration elements

Overview

A page flow file is comprised of three sections:

  • The <files> elements list files that must be served directly to the client, such as images or CSS files.
  • The <page> elements declare pages and for each one specify identifier, path, model, view, and XML submission.
  • The <epilogue>``, <not-found-handler>, <unauthorized-handler> and <error-handler> elements define additional behavior that apply to all the pages.

The files element

Some files are not dynamically generated and are served to the client as-is. This is typically the case for images such as GIF, JPEG, CSS files, etc..

You tell the PFC what files to serve directly with one or more <files> elements in the page flow. The example below shows the configuration used by the Orbeon Forms examples:

<controller>
    <files path="*.gif"/>
    <files path="*.css"/>
    <files path="*.pdf"/>
    <files path="*.js"/>
    <files path="*.png"/>
    <files path="*.jpg"/>
    <files path="*.wsdl"/>
    <files path="*.html" mediatype="text/html"/>
    <files path="*.java" mediatype="text/plain"/>
    <files path="*.txt"  mediatype="text/plain"/>
    <files path="*.xq"   mediatype="text/plain"/>
    ...
</controller>

With <files path="*.gif">, if a request reaches the PFC with the path images/logo.gif, the file oxf:/images/logo.gif is sent in response to that request.

The <files> element supports the path and matcher attributes like the <page> element. It also supports a mediatype attribute telling the PFC what media type must be sent to the client with the files. The PFC uses defaults for well-known extension, as defined by the Resource Server processor. In doubt, you can specify the mediatype attribute.

The epilogue element

You often want a common look and feel across pages. Instead of duplicating the code implementing this look and feel in every page view, you can define it in a central location called the page flow epilogue. The <epilogue> element specifies the XPL pipeline which implements the page flow epilogue.

This is an example of <epilogue> element, pointing to the default epilogue XPL pipeline:

<epilogue url="oxf:/config/epilogue.xpl">

The page flow epilogue is discussed in more details in the Page Flow Epilogue documentation.

The not-found-handler element

The <not-found-handler> element is used to specify a page (the "not found" page) to call when no <page> element in the page flow is matched by the current request. There can be only one <not-found-handler> per page flow.

The "not found" page is also run by the PFC when a page throws an exception denoting that a resource has not been found:

  • HttpStatusCodeException with code 404
  • ResourceNotFoundException

The "not found" page does not run for resources served through the <files> element. In that case, the PFC returns instead a "not found" code to the user agent (code 404 in the case of HTTP).

This is an example of <not-found-handler> element and the associated <page> element:

<page id="my-not-found" path="/not-found" view="/config/not-found.xhtml">  
...
<not-found-handler page="my-not-found">

By default, oxf:/config/not-found.xhtml displays a simple XHTML page telling the user that the page requested cannot be found.

NOTE: The "not found" page does not run for resources served through the <files> element. In that case, the PFC returns instead a "not found" code to the user agent (code 404 in the case of HTTP).

The unauthorized-handler element

The <unauthorized-handler> element is used to specify a page (the "unauthorized" page) to call when an unauthorized condition has taken place. Specifically, this happens when a page throws an exception:

  • HttpStatusCodeException with code 401 or 403

Example:

This is an example of <unauthorized-handler> element and the associated <page> element:

<page id="my-unauthorized" path="/unauthorized" view="unauthorized.xhtml">  
...
<unauthorized-handler page="my-unauthorized">

Error handling and the error-handler element

Several things can go wrong during the execution of a page flow by the PFC, in particular:

  1. An action, page model, page view or epilogue may generate an error at runtime.
  2. The page flow may be ill-formed.

Errors occurring while running a given page (#1 above) can be handled via the <error-handler> element. This works in a way very similar to the <not-found-handler> element:

<page id="error" path="/error" model="/config/error.xpl"/>
...
<error-handler page="error"/>

Other errors (#2 above) are not directly handled by the PFC. Instead, they are handled with the error XPL pipeline specified in the web application's web.xml file. By default, the error processor is the Pipeline processor, which runs the oxf:/config/error.xpl XPL pipeline. You can configure error.xpl for your own needs. By default, it formats and displays the Java exception which caused ther error.

See Packaging and Deployment for more information about configuring error processors.

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