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Repository Decorators

As a domain-driven design concept, the repository is a layer between your domain object and data mapping layers that uses a collection-like interface for accessing domain objects.

In LoopBack, a domain object is usually a TypeScript/JavaScript Class instance. A typical example of a data mapping layer module could be a database’s node.js driver.

LoopBack repository encapsulates your TypeScript/JavaScript Class instance and the methods that communicate with your database. It is an interface to implement data persistence.

Repository decorators are used for defining models (domain objects) for use with your chosen datasources and for the navigation strategies among models.

If you are not familiar with repository related concepts like Model, Entity and Datasource, see LoopBack concept Repositories to learn more.

Model Decorators

Model is a class that LoopBack builds for you to organize the data that shares the same configurations and properties. You can use model decorators to define a model and its properties.

Model Decorator

Syntax: @model(definition?: ModelDefinitionSyntax)

Model decorator is a class decorator. In LoopBack 4, we inherit the model definition format from LoopBack 3, which is described in the Model definition JSON file. For usage examples, see Define Models

Please note we will elaborate more about model and model definition in the Model page, and replace the link above with a LoopBack 4 link

By using a model decorator, you can define a model as your repository’s metadata, which then allows you to choose between two ways of creating the repository instance:

  1. Inject your repository and resolve it with the datasource juggler bridge
    that’s complete with CRUD operations for accessing the model’s data. A use case can be found in this section: Repository decorator

  2. Define your own repository without using the datasource juggler bridge, and use an ORM/ODM of your choice.

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Property Decorator

Syntax: @property(definition?: PropertyDefinition)

The property decorator defines metadata for a property on a Model definition. The format of property definitions can be found in Property definitions

For usage examples, see Define Models

Repository Decorator


@repository(modelOrRepo: string | Class<Repository<Model>> | typeof Entity, dataSource?: string | juggler.DataSource)

This decorator either injects an existing repository or creates a repository from a model and a datasource.

The injection example can be found in Repository#controller-configuration

To create a repository in a controller, you can define your model and datasource first, then import them in your controller file:

// src/controllers/todo.controller.ts
import {Todo} from '../models';
import {db} from '../datasources/db.datasource';
import {repository, EntityCrudRepository} from '@loopback/repository';

export class TodoController {
  @repository(Todo, db)
  todoRepo: EntityCrudRepository<Todo, number>;
  // ...

If the model or datasource is already bound to the app, you can create the repository by providing their names instead of the classes. For example:

// with `datasource` and `Todo` already defined.

export class TodoController {
  @repository('Todo', 'db')
  repository: EntityCrudRepository<Todo, number>;
  // etc

Relation Decorators

This feature has not yet been released in alpha form. Documentation will be added here as this feature progresses.

The relation decorator defines the nature of a relationship between two models.

Relation Decorator

Syntax: @relation

Register a general relation.

This feature has not yet been released in alpha form. Documentation will be added here as this feature progresses.

Specific Relation Decorator


  • @belongsTo
  • @hasOne
  • @hasMany
  • @embedsOne
  • @embedsMany
  • @referencesOne
  • @referencesMany

Register a specific relation.

This feature has not yet been released in alpha form. Documentation will be added here as this feature progresses.