Routing Methods

Apart from routing by convention, you can also register your own expressive routes. Let's investigate the routing approaches.

Inline Terminator

The route() method allows you to register a pattern and immediately assign it to execute an event or a response via the target argument.

route( "/wiki:pagename", "" );

The first pattern registers and if matched it will execute the event. The second pattern if matched it will execute the event from the users module and register the route with the userprofile name.

Inline Responses

You can also pass in a closure or lambda to the target argument and it will be treated as an inline action:

    target=function( event, rc, prc ){
        return "hello ColdBox!";

    target=function( event, rc, prc ){
        return getInstance( "UserService" ).list();

You can also pass just an HTML string with {rc_var} replacements for the routed variables place in the request collection

    "<h1>Hello {name} how are you today!</h1>"

Routing to Events

If you will not use the inline terminators you can do a full expressive route definition to events using the to() method, which allows you to concatenate the route pattern with modifiers:

route( "/wiki/:pagename" )
    .to( "" );

route( "/users/:id/profile" )
    .as( "userProfile" )
    .to( "" );

route( "/users/:id/profile" )
    .as( "userProfile" )
    .withVerbs( "GET" )
    .header( "cache", false )
    .prc( "isActive", true )
    .to( "" );

Routing To Handler Action Combinations

You can also route to a handler and an action using the modifiers instead of the to() method. This long-form is usually done for visibility or dynamic writing of routes. You can use the following methods:

  • withHandler()

  • withAction()

  • toHandler()

  • end()

route( "wiki/:pagename" )
    .as( "wikipage" )
    .withAction( "show" )
    .toHandler( "wiki" );

route( "wiki/:pagename" )
    .withHander( "wiki" )
    .withAction( "show" )

Routing to Views

You can also route to views and view/layout combinations by using the toView() terminator:

route( "/contact-us" )
        view = "view name",
        layout = "layout",
        nolayout = false,
        viewModule = "moduleName",
        layoutModule = "moduleName"

Routing to Redirects

You can also use the toRedirect() method to re-route patterns to other patterns.

route( "/my-old/link" )
    .toRedirect( target="/new/pattern", statusCode=301 );

The default status code for redirects are 301 redirects which are PERMANENT redirects.

Dynamic Routing Redirection

You can also pass a closure as the target of relocation. This closure will received the parsed parameters, the incoming route record and the event object. You can determine dynamically where the relocation will go.

route( "/my-old/link" )
    .toRedirect( ( route, params, event ) => "/new/route" )
route( "/my-old/link" )
    .toRedirect( ​function( route, params, event ){ 
        return "/new/route"; 
} ) 

This is great if you need to actually parse the incoming route and do a dynamic relocation.

route( "/old/api/users/:id" )    
    .toRedirect( ( route, params, event ) => { 
        return "/api/v1/users/" } 

Happy Redirecting!

Routing to Handlers

You can also redirect a pattern to a handler using the toHandler() method. This is usually done if you have the action coming in via the URL or you are using RESTFul actions.

// Action comes via the URL
route( "/users/:action" )
    .toHandler( "users" );

Routing to RESTFul Actions

You can also route a pattern to HTTP RESTFul actions. This means that you can split the routing pattern according to incoming HTTP Verb. You will use a modifier withAction() and then assign it to a handler via the toHandler() method.

// RESTFul actions
route( "/users/:id?" )
    .withAction( {
        GET : "index",
        POST : "save",
        PUT : "update",
        DELETE : "remove"
    } )
    .toHandler( "users" );

Routing to Responses

The Router allows you to create inline responses via closures/lambdas or enhanced strings to incoming URL patterns. You do not need to create handler/actions, you can put the actions inline as responses.

 * Setup a response for a URL pattern
 * @body A closure/lambda or enhanced HTML string
 * @statusCode The status code to send
 * @statusText The status code to send
function toResponse( 
    required body, 
    numeric statusCode = 200, 
    statusText = "Ok" 

If you use a response closure/lambda, they each accepts three arguments:

  1. event - An object that models and is used to work with the current request (Request Context)

  2. rc - A struct that contains both URL/FORM variables merged together (unsafe data)

  3. prc - A secondary struct that is private only settable from within your application (safe data)

// Simple response routing
route( "/users/hello", function( event, rc, prc ){
    return "<h1>Hello From RESTLand</h1>";
} );

// Simple response routing with placeholders
route( "/users/:username", function( event, rc, prc ){
    return "<h1>Hello #encodeForHTML( rc.username )# From RESTLand</h1>";
} );

// Routing with the toResponse() method
route( "/users/:id" )
    .toResponse( function( event, rc, prc ){
        var oUser = getInstance( "UserService" ).get( ?: 0 );
        if( oUser.isLoaded() ){
            return oUser.getMemento();
        event.setHTTPHeader( statusCode = 400, statusText = "Invalid User ID provided" );
        return {
            "error" : true,
            "messages" : "Invalid User ID Provided"
    } );

If the response is an HTML string, then you can do {rc_var} replacements on the strings as well:

// Routing with enhanced HTML strings
route( "/users/:id" )
        "<h1>Welcome back user: {id} how are you today!</h1>"

Sub-Domain Routing

You can also register routes that will respond to sub-domains and even capture portions of the sub-domain for multi-tenant applications or SaaS applications. You will do this using the withDomain() method.

route( "/" )
  .withDomain( "" )
  .to( "subdomain.index" );

route( "/" )
  .withDomain( "" )
  .to( "" );

You can leverage the full routing DSL as long as you add the withDomain() call with the domain you want to bind the route to. Also note that the domain string can contain placeholders which will be translated to RC variables for you if matched.

Tip: Please note that you can leverage Routing Groups as well for domains

Adding Variables to RC/PRC

You can also add variables to the RC and PRC structs on a per-route basis by leveraging the following methods:

  • rc( name, value, overwrite=true ) - Add an RC value if the route matched

  • rcAppend map, overwrite=true ) - Add multiple values to the RC collection if the route matched

  • prc( name, value, overwrite=true ) - Add an PRC value if the route matched

  • prcAppend map, overwrite=true ) - Add multiple values to the PRC collection if the route matched

This is a great way to manually set variables in the incoming structures:

route( "/api/v1/users/:id" )
    .rcAppend( { secured : true } )
    .prcAppend( { name : "hello" } )
    .to( "" );

Routing Conditions

You can also apply runtime conditions to a route in order for it to be matched. This means that if the route matches the URL pattern then we will execute a closure/lambda to make sure that it meets the runtime conditions. We will do this with the withCondition() method.

Let's say you only want to fire some routes if they are using Firefox, or a user is logged in, or whatever.

route( "/go/firefox" )
  withCondition( function( requestString ){
    return ( findnocase( "Firefox", cgi.HTTP_USER_AGENT ) ? true : false );
  .to( "firefox.index" );

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