Beam: a type-safe, non-TH Haskell relational database library and ORM
Beam is a Haskell interface to relational databases. Beam uses the Haskell type system to verify that queries are type-safe before sending them to the database server. Queries are written in a straightforward, natural monadic syntax. Combinators are provided for all standard SQL92 features, and a significant subset of SQL99, SQL2003, and SQL2008 features. For your convenience a thorough compatibility matrix is maintained here.
Beam is standards compliant but not naive. We recognize that different database backends provide different guarantees, syntaxes, and advantages. To reflect this, beam maintains a modular design. While the core package provides standard functionality, beam is split up into a variety of backends which provide a means to interface Beam's data query and update DSLs with particular RDBMS backends. Backends can be written and maintained independently of this repository. For example, the beam-mysql and beam-firebird backends are packaged independently.
Recognizing that over-abstraction frequently means caving in to the lowest common denominator, Beam does not do connection or transaction management. Rather, the user is free to perform these functions using the appropriate Haskell interface library for their backend of choice. Additionally, beam backends provide a significant portion of backend-specific functionality which seamlessly fits into the beam ecosystem.
For example, the
beam-postgres backend is built off of the
interface library. When using
beam-postgres, the user manages connections and
postgresql-simple. The user is free to issue queries
postgresql-simple, only using beam when desired. Postgres offers
a number of rich data types on top of the standard SQL data types. To reflect
beam-postgres offers pluggable support for postgres-specific data types
For more information, see the user guide.
For questions, feel free to join
our mailing list or
head over to
#haskell-beam on freenode.
A word on testing
beam-core has in-depth unit tests to test query generation over an idealized
ANSI SQL-compliant backend. You may be concerned that there are no tests in
beam-postgres. Do not be alarmed. The documentation
contains many, many examples of queries written over the sample Chinook
database, the schema for which can be found at
beam-sqlite/examples/Chinook/Schema.hs. The included
beam_query python Markdown extension automatically run every query
in the documentation against a live database connection. Any errors in
serializion/deserialization or invalid syntax are caught while building the
documentation. Feel free to open pull-requests with additional examples/tests.
Tests are written
!beam-query ```haskell !example <template-name> <requirements> do x <- all_ (customer chinookDb) -- chinookDb available under chinook and chinookdml examples pure x ```
!beam-query declaration indicates this is markdown code block that
contains beam query code. The
!example declaration indicates that this example
should be built against applicable backends and included in the code. The
template_name is either
chinookdml (depending on whether you
have quest a query or a DML statement). For
chinook, the included code should
Q query. For
chinookdml, the included code should be a monadic
action in a
requirements can be used to select which backends
to run this against. See the documentation for examples.
Building the documentation
mkdocs for its documentation generation. The included
build-docs.sh script can take care of building the documentation and serving
it locally. In order to use the tool though, make sure you have a python
installation with the
mkdocs module installed. You can do this by creating a
virtualenv, and pip installing
mkdocs, or by using the supplied
The documentation uses a custom Markdown preprocessor to automatically build
examples against the canonical Chinook database. By default, beam will build
examples for every beam backend it knows about, including ones not in the main
source tree (see
docs/beam.yaml for the full configuration). This means you
will need to have an instance of all these database servers running and
available. This is usually not what you want.
To only build examples for a particular backend, modify
mkdocs.yaml and set
enabled_backends configuration setting for the
preprocessor. For example, to only build docs for
- docs.markdown.beam_query: template_dir: 'docs/beam-templates' cache_dir: 'docs/.beam-query-cache' conf: 'docs/beam.yaml' base_dir: '.'
- docs.markdown.beam_query: template_dir: 'docs/beam-templates' cache_dir: 'docs/.beam-query-cache' conf: 'docs/beam.yaml' base_dir: '.' enabled_backends: - beam-sqlite