Vapor Firebase Realtime database provider

What's New


Ferno 🔥

Ferno allows you to easily connect your Vapor project with your Firebase realtime database. It is built with the brand new Vapor 3. It gives you a nice and clean interface to interact with the Firebase Realtime REST API. It will automatically turn the response into your class/struct!


You will need:

  • Vapor 3.0+


In your Package.swift file, add the line

.package(url: "https://github.com/vapor-community/ferno.git", from: "0.2.0")

Also make sure you add Ferno as a dependency

dependencies: ["Vapor", ..., "Ferno"]


  1. Ferno uses an access token to read and write to your database. First we will need to get your service account information.

    • Log into the Firebase console
    • Click the settings gear next to Project Overview
    • Select Project settings
    • Select the SERVICE ACCOUNTS tab
    • Click the button at the bottom that says GENERATE NEW PRIVATE KEY
    • This will download a .json file. You will now have access to the email and private key. You will pass those into the initialize during the next step.
  2. Register Ferno as a Provider and import Ferno. This is usually done in configure.swift

import Ferno

let fernoConfig = FernoConfig(basePath: "database-url", email: "service-account-email", privateKey: "private-key")
try services.register(FernoProvider())


There are some custom parameters to pass into functions. I want to go over all the parameters you will need to know.


In GET requests, you might want to query on your data. This is what [FernoQuery] is for.

FernoQuery is an enum with:

  1. case shallow(Bool)
  2. case orderBy(FernoValue)
  3. case limitToFirst(FernoValue)
  4. case limitToLast(FernoValue)
  5. case startAt(FernoValue)
  6. case endAt(FernoValue)
  7. case equalTo(FernoValue)

These are all the possible queries that are allowed on Firebase according to the docs

NOTES on [FernoQuery]

  • shallow(Bool) cannot be mixed with any other query parameters.
  • you usually use orderBy(FernoValue) in conjunction with enums 3-7
  • using orderBy(FernoValue) alone will just order the data returned


You will notice most cases in FernoQuery have a value of FernoValue. FernoValue is just a wrapper for Bool, String, Int, Double, Float. So you can just do .startAt(5) and everything will work.

Examples of [FernoQuery]

Just using shallow:


Filter data to only return data that matches "age": 21:

[.orderBy("age"), .equalTo(21)]

Just orderBy(returns data in ascending order):



There are 6 functions that allow you to interact with your Firebase realtime database.


There are two functions that allow you get your data.

client.ferno.retrieve(req: Request, queryItems: [FernoQuery], appendedPath: [String])
client.ferno.retrieveMany(req: Request, queryItems: [FernoQuery], appendedPath: [String])

The only difference between retrieve and retrieveMany is the return type.

  • retrieve returns -> F where F is of type Decodable
  • retrieveMany returns -> [String: F] where F is of type Decodable and String is the key


  1. Define the value you want the data converted.
struct Developer: Content {
   var name: String
   var favLanguage: String
   var age: Int
  1. Make the request. Make sure you set the type of the response so Ferno knows what to convert.
let developers: Future<[String: Developer]> = try client.ferno.retrieveMany(req: request, queryItems: [], appendedPath: ["developers"])
let developer: Future<Developer> = try client.ferno.retrieve(req: request, queryItems: [], appendedPath: ["developers", "dev1"])


Used to create a new entry in your database

client.ferno.create(req: Request, appendedPath: [String], body: T) -> Future<FernoChild>
  • body: T is of type Content.
  • FernoChild is a struct:
struct FernoChild: Content {
  var name: String
  • FernoChild is returned, because the API request returns the key from the newly created child.


let newDeveloper = Developer(name: "Elon", favLanguage: "Python", age: 46) //conforms to Content
let newDeveloperKey: Future<FernoChild> = try client.ferno.create(req: request, appendedPath: ["developers"], body: newDeveloper)


Used to delete an entry in your database

client.ferno.delete(req: Request, appendedPath: [String]) -> Future<Bool>
  • the delete method will return a boolean depending on if the delete was successful


let successfulDelete: Future<Bool> = try client.ferno.delete(req: request, appendedPath: ["developers", "dev-1"])


update values at a specific location, but omitted values won't get removed

client.ferno.update(req: Request, appendedPath: [String], body: T -> Future<T>
  • the update method will return the body


struct UpdateDeveloperName: Content {
  var name: String

let newDeveloperName = UpdateDeveloperName(name: "Kimbal") //conforms to Content
let updatedDeveloperName: Future<UpdateDeveloperName> = try client.ferno.update(req: request, appendedPath: ["developers", newDeveloperKey.name], body: newDeveloper) //newDeveloperKey.name comes from the create method


overwrite the current location with data you are passing in

client.ferno.overwrite(req: Request, appendedPath: [String], body: T -> Future<T>


struct LeadDeveloper: Content {
  var name: String
  var company: String
  var age: Int

let leadDeveloper = LeadDeveloper(name: "Ashley", company: "Bio-Fit", age: 20)
let leadDevResponse: Future<LeadDeveloper> = try client.ferno.overwrite(req: request, appendedPath: ["developers", newDeveloperKey.name], body: leadDeveloper)


Currently, tests were written using an actual dummy Firebase realtime database. If you want to run all of the tests, you will need to create a dummy Firebase realtime database.

Testing Setup

You need to go to Application+Testing.swift and fill in the missing values based on your Firebase service account. Then you will be able to run tests.


  • Austin Astorga - Main developer - My Github


This project is licensed under the MIT License - see the LICENSE.md file for details


  • Vapor Discord (for helping me with all my issues <3)
  • Stripe Provider as a great template! stripe-provider


  • Swift Tools 4.0.0
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Last updated: Fri Feb 03 2023 11:38:24 GMT-0500 (GMT-05:00)