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Apodini/ApodiniIoTDeploymentProvider 0.2.0
A deployment provider for Apodini web services in IoT environments
⭐️ 0
🕓 4 weeks ago
.package(url: "https://github.com/Apodini/ApodiniIoTDeploymentProvider.git", from: "0.2.0")

IoT Deployment Provider

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This repository contains an deployment provider for Apodini web services to an IoT environment. It allows the easy and automatic deployment without the need to know what devices are currently in the network.


Please note, that the provider and its associated libraries are still under active development and any features and/or use cases might still be subject to change. Obviously, this also means that this project is not bug-free. If you noticed any, please reach out!


If you use a raspberry pi, please make sure you have the following things set up before using the IoT deployment provider on it:

  • The avahi daemon is up and running. For a guide on how to, see here
  • You setup a key-based ssh connection to the pi enabling remote calls with being prompted for a password
  • You can connect your IoT device to the network of your raspberry pi
  • You need to have at least the Swift 5.5/ Swift 5.6 toolchain or docker installed on your raspberry pi.

Setting up the provider

To allow the setup for custom user-defined actions and IoT devices, the IoT DP is a developed as a shared library that offers the IoTDeploymentProvider. This repository contains the IoTDeploymentProvider.

Let's look at the following example to describe how the provider works and how one can set it up: Assume we have some LIFX smart lamps that are connected to our raspberry pi. We wrote a cool web service using Apodini that exposes among other, the functionality of the lights (e.g. on/off, control the brightness, etc.) via some endpoints. Now we want to deploy the web service to our raspberry pi using the IoT deployment provider.

Internally the provider runs a device discovery that searches for devices that publish services under the given identifier, e.g. raspberry pis. It is possible to define PostDiscoveryActions. These are user-defined actions that will be executed on the found devices are return an Int telling us how many results of the action were found. Please refer to the README of the repository for more information.

The post discovery action defined by SwiftDeviceDiscovery can be passed to the IoT deployment provider. This is what we are going to do. But first, we need to create our own LifxPostDiscoveryAction. It should check if there are any lifx devices connected to raspberry pi. Luckily, there is already a library that searches for lifx devices, so all we need to do is to run this action remotely on the pi and count the results. So we're going to create a new project called Swift-NIO-LIFX-Impl where we will use the Swift-NIO-LIFX and the SwiftDeviceDiscovery library. You can checkout the code here. The project needs two target, one containing the post discovery action and the other being the actual executable that calculates the results. The executable will be, for our use case, just a simple CLI program that runs the Swift-NIO-LIFX discovery and persists the results to disk. In our 'action' target, we need to run the executable target and read the results from the written file. Keep in mind that the post discovery action is executed locally, so in the action we need to copy the project to the pi and run it there. We can do this by writing a script that we executing within the action. What the script does, is basically cloning, building and running the project on the pi and copy the result in the persisted file back to our local machine. If you interested in the details, feel free to check it out by yourself. The Swift-NIO-LIFX-Impl repo contains also a docker file from which you can build a docker image to pass it to the provider.

Now that we created the action, we can continue by making a new target called LifxDeploymentOption. This will be used to define a deployment option using Apodini.Metadata. The option specifies the deployment target and can be used in the web service to annotate handler or groups and associate them with the deployment target. To put it in another way, all handlers/groups that are not annotate, will not be accessible on the deployed web service. Since it will be directly associated with the deployment target, it makes sense to name it somewhat similar, we will name it lifx.

extension DeploymentDevice {
    public static var lifx: Self {
        DeploymentDevice(rawValue: "lifx")

DeploymentDevice is a ComponentMetadataDefinition that can be extended to define custom device types of DeploymentDevice as seen above. This approach guarantees that all defined device types are conformable to DeploymentDevice.

In the next step, we import the created target to our web service and annotate all lifx related handlers with our new created meta data option, like this:

Text("Should not be visible")

Once we are done, we create a second target, this time executable, and call into LifxDeploymentProvider. This will be our actual deployment provider. To make it work, we need to import the IoTDeploymentProvider. The IoTDeploymentProvider we are about to initialise takes a couple of arguments. If you already sure about these and just want a static provider, you can just pass the hardcoded parameters, otherwise we would suggest using SwiftArgumentParser to allow some customization from the command line. Beside that we need to also import our newly created LifxDeploymentOption target as well as the LifxPostDiscoveryAction package we created in the beginning. After initializing the IoTDeploymentProvider property, we can call

    scope: .all, 
    action: .action(LIFXDeviceDiscoveryAction.self), 
    option: .device(.lifx)

to register our self-written action. After that we can start the deployment with provider.run(). That's it! After we started the deployment, the IoT deployment provider should take care of the rest. Once the deployment is completed, the web service should be accessible under your pis ip address and the default port 8080 if you have specified the metadata on some endpoints and the corresponding post discovery action returned a positive result.

Further customization

As you may noticed if you have checked out the project containing the example action, it is possible to access the configuration of the DeviceDiscovery in your post discovery action by using a property wrapper like:

var username: String

This grants access to predefined configuration properties such as username or logger If you like to define custom configurations, you can do so by writing an extension somewhere in the library target of the project containing your action.

public extension ConfigurationProperty {
/// A `ConfigurationProperty` for the deployment directory.
    static var deploymentDirectory = ConfigurationProperty("key_deploymentDirectory")

When defining your deployment provider, pass them to the initialiser by just adding :

additionalConfiguration: [
    .deploymentDirectory: "/usr/deployment"

It is also possible to just pass a docker image as a post discovery action. Sometimes, this can be more conventient as you dont have to define a separate package and are not constraint to the Swift language.

    scope: .all, 
    action: .docker(
            identifier: ActionIdentifier("Lifx_Action"),
            imageName: "my/image:latest-test",
            fileUrl: URL(fileURLWithPath: "path/to/my/results/lifx_results.json"),
            options: [
                .port(hostPort: 56700, containerPort: 56700),
                .volume(hostDir: "/usr/demo", containerDir: "/app/tmp"),
                .credentials(username: "myUsername", password: "myPassword"),
    option: .device(.lifx)

Futhermore it is possible to enable automatic redeployment. This will continously check the network after the inital deployment has finished. If there are new devices, it will automatically deploy the web service on them, if they returned positive post discovery actions results. It will also monitor the end devices and adjust the exposed endpoints accordingly. Example: A lamp was previously connected as an end devices causing the corresponding endpoints to be exposed. It left the network, thus automatic redeployment updates the web service and the endpoints are no longer accessible. It can be enable by passing

automaticRedeployment: true

when initializing an IoT deployment provider.

Final remarks

As mentioned in the beginning, this is still work in progress. So if you come across any bugs or feel like there is some important feature missing or you just have questions about the provider, please don't hesitate to reach out to me (@hendesi) or Paul (@PSchmiedmayer).


This project has been validated in two case studies. Links down below.


Contributions to this project are welcome. Please make sure to read the contribution guidelines and the contributor covenant code of conduct first.


This project is licensed under the MIT License. See license for more information.


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Last commit: 2 weeks ago
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Release Notes

4 weeks ago

What's Changed

Full Changelog: https://github.com/Apodini/ApodiniIoTDeploymentProvider/compare/0.1.3...0.2.0

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