Angular applications done right, using Angular-Cli.

In this post we will see how to use the Angular-Cli to create an Angular application using the following diagram.

example-diagram

Sometimes it’s hard to know how to create a scalable Angular application, especially when dealing with all Angular-Cli commands. It is very common not to know for sure when to use a module, or a component, or when a component is a page/view or even when we need a new routing file.

A few days ago, the Angular Console was launched, a graphic interface that abstracts the main commands and combinations of the Angular-Cli. However what this interface does, is just to show you a more intuitive way to build your application using the Angular-Cli commands behind the scene.

I personally recommend you to be familiar with the basic commands in your terminal. Of course this will help you a lot when using the Angular Console.

It is very common to find Angular applications containing only one module file, usually the app.module.ts and only one route file, the app-routing.module.ts. In small applications, this recipe may even work, but usually in the real world, this becomes a nightmare. Believe me I’ve seen app.module.ts files with more than 1000 lines of code.

When you organize your application in modules and routes for each functionality, you can keep everything much more organized. So let’s see an example below very useful for this purpose.

Creating new application.

  1. Create the application using some useful flags.

ng new AppExample --style=scss --routing --skip-install -g -p appex

Flags explained:

Flag Action
--style=scss Using SCSS instead default CSS option
--routing Add application routing file
--skip-install Skip dependencies installation (IE. node_modules)
-g Skip git initialization
-p appex Add appex as html prefix
  1. Create a root module.

Type the following command, to go inside the newly created project: cd AppExample && src/app, still on terminal window type the following command:

ng g module dashboard --routing --spec=false

Flags explained:

Flag Action
--routing Create a Routing file and add to DashboardModule.
  1. Create a root component.

Type the following command:

ng g component dashboard/dashboard --flat -t -s --spec=false --module=dashboard

Flags explained:

Flag Action
--flat Don’t create a directory called dashboard
-t Use Inline Template
-s Use Inline Style
--spec=false Don’t generate a .spec test file
--module=dashboard Add dashboard component to DashboardModule
  1. Create a band page/component.

Type the following command:

ng g component dashboard/bands -t -s --module=dashboard

Adding routes

  1. Open src/app/app.module.ts and import the DashboardModule right after AppRoutingModule.
  2. Open src/app/app-routing .module.ts add the following route:
{
	path: '',
	redirectTo: 'dashboard',
	pathMatch: 'full'
}
  1. Open src/app/dashboard/dashboard-routing.module.ts and add the following code:
{
	path: 'dashboard',
		children: [
		{
			path: '',
			component: DashboardComponent
		},
		{
			path: 'bands',
			component: BandsComponent
		}
	]
}

Refactoring the main app.component

  1. Open src/app/app.component.ts and replace the content for the following code:
	<a  routerLink="/dashboard/bands">Bands</a>
	<router-outlet></router-outlet>

Creating services

  1. Inside your terminal window, type the following command:

ng g service dashboard/bands/_services/band

  1. Open src/app/dashboard/bands/_services/band.service.ts and add the following code:
import { Injectable } from '@angular/core';
import { HttpClient, HttpErrorResponse } from '@angular/common/http';

import { environment } from 'src/environments/environment';
import { Band } from './../_models/band';
import { Observable, throwError } from 'rxjs';
import { catchError } from 'rxjs/operators';

const API_URL = environment.apiUrl;

@Injectable({
  providedIn: 'root'
})
export class BandService {

  constructor(
    private http: HttpClient
  ) { }

  getBandList (): Observable<Band[]> {
    return this.http.get<Band[]>(`${API_URL}/bands`)
      .pipe(
        catchError(error => this.handleError(error))
      );
  }

  private handleError(error: HttpErrorResponse) {
    if (error.error instanceof ErrorEvent) {
      console.error('An error occurred:', error.error.message);
    } else {
      return throwError(error);
    }
    return throwError('Ohps something wrong happen here; please try again later.');
  }
}

Note that we are using the environment files to setup the Api url

Now let’s create a Model for band service.

Creating Models

Here we have two options to create a Model, using Class or using Interface, as we know interfaces doesn’t exit on JavaScript, so the purpose here is only to use the TypeScript type checking, so for this example we are using the Class implementation.

  1. On your terminal type the following command:

ng g class dashboard/bands/_models/band --spec=false

  1. Open src/app/dashboard/bands/_models/band.ts and add the following code:
export class Band {
  name: string;
  country: string;
  genre: string;

  constructor(values: Object = {}) {
    Object.assign(this, values);
  }
}

Now besides having the TypeScript type checking we can instantiate a new class using the new keyword: new Band().

Refactoring the band.component.ts and band.component.html

  1. Open src/app/dashboard/bands/band.component.ts and add the following code:
import { Component, OnInit } from '@angular/core';

import { Band } from './_models/band';
import { BandService } from './_services/band.service';

@Component({
  selector: 'appex-bands',
  templateUrl: './bands.component.html',
  styles: []
})
export class BandsComponent implements OnInit {
  bandList: Band[];

  constructor(
    private bandService: BandService
  ) { }

  getBands() {
    this.bandService.getBandList().subscribe(
      response => {
        this.bandList = response;
      },
      error => {
        console.log(error);
      }
    )
  }

  ngOnInit() {
    this.getBands();
  }

}
  1. Open src/app/dashboard/bands/band.component.html and add the following code:
<p>
  bands works!
</p>
<ul *ngFor="let band of bandList; let i=index">
  <li></li>
</ul>

Creating a sample Api

For this section we will use the json-server module.

  1. Open yout terminal window and type the following command:

npm install json-sever --save-dev

  1. Open package.json file and add the following script:
"json-server": "json-server --watch db.json"
  1. Create a new file called db.json at the root project with the following content:
{
  "bands": [
    {
      "id": 1,
      "name": "Motorhead",
      "country": "England",
      "genre": "Heavy Metal"
    },
    {
      "id": 2,
      "name": "Slayer",
      "country": "USA",
      "genre": "Thrash Metal"
    },
    {
      "id": 3,
      "name": "Truckfighters",
      "country": "Sweeden",
      "genre": "Stoner"
    }
  ]
}

That’s all, pretty easy!

Running the app

  1. Open yout terminal window and type the following command:

npm start

  1. On another terminal window, type the following command:

npm run json-server

Well, just check the http://localhost:4200 and navigate!

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